Patterico's Pontifications

6/11/2024

Jury Finds Hunter Biden Guilty

Filed under: General — Dana @ 8:32 am



[guest post by Dana]

From NBC:

A jury in Delaware has found Hunter Biden guilty on three felony gun charges.

Hunter Biden was charged in federal court in Wilmington with three felony counts tied to possession of a gun while using narcotics. He had pleaded not guilty.

Two of the counts carry maximum prison sentences of 10 years, while the third has a maximum of five years. Each count also carries a maximum fine of $250,000.

Judge Noreika hasn’t set a sentencing date yet.

I haven’t followed this matter too closely but prominent Republicans have been very vocal about it. Here are some of their responses to the verdict:

And here is President Biden’s statement:

—-Dana

191 Responses to “Jury Finds Hunter Biden Guilty”

  1. Hello.

    Dana (615346)

  2. He is unlikely to get time. Probation conditioned on remaining clean and sober.

    Kevin M (a9545f)

  3. Good. Based on what I’ve read he seemed guilty.

    Time123 (57e29b)

  4. The judge disliked the way the original plea deal was written, and asked a question about its scope (did it block all additional charges from the period in question?) and the prosecutors said no and the defense said it did.

    So she threw it out and said start over. At that point Weiss was given special counsel status to avoid criticisms that “the DoJ” was forcing Weiss to cave.

    Kevin M (a9545f)

  5. Hunter still faces 9 tax charges, 3 of which are felonies.

    Kevin M (a9545f)

  6. I look forward to the MAGA activists insisting that the trial of Hunter was just and shows how Joe is irredeemably corrupt, while insisting that the trial of the Donald was unjust and says nothing at all about his character.

    aphrael (99fd6b)

  7. My take on this is that Hunter would have gotten a reasonable plea deal if “the DoJ” hadn’t tried so hard to stack the deck in his favor.

    (I say “the DoJ” because, as we all know, it is strictly independent and for, say, Biden to try to influence them would be obstruction.)

    Kevin M (a9545f)

  8. I look forward to the MAGA activists insisting that the trial of Hunter was just and shows how Joe is irredeemably corrupt, while insisting that the trial of the Donald was unjust and says nothing at all about his character.

    And I look for Biden’s camp to say just about the opposite. Do not for a second think that Trump has a corner on dishonesty in politics.

    Kevin M (a9545f)

  9. I think it’s a reasonable proposition that we don’t generally hold the sins of the sons against the fathers, so I don’t see this as a situation of hypocrisy or dishonesty on the left.

    If you want to point to leftist hypocrisy or dishonesty here, it lies in ignoring Hunter while attacking Ginny Thomas and Martha Alito. Although even then I think there’s a stronger case for holding the sins of the spouse against the other spouse than there is for holding the sins of the sons against the fathers.

    aphrael (99fd6b)

  10. “As I said last week, I am the president, but I am also a dad. Jill and I love our son, and we are so proud of the man he is today. So many families who have had loved ones battle addiction understand the feeling of pride seeing someone you love come out the other side and be so strong and resilient in recovery. As I also said last week, I will accept the outcome of this case and will continue to respect the judicial process as Hunter considers an appeal. Jill and I will always be there for Hunter and the rest of our family with our love and support. Nothing will ever change that.”

    Sam G (4e6c22)

  11. Surprisingly, I wasn’t my usual jaundiced self in that I sort of expected the Delaware jury to reach what certainly sounded like the only rational decision in the matter. I even made that prediction on an NRO post last night in a reply to a comment suggesting that the fix was in and a pro-Biden juror would vote to acquit.

    But I agree with Kevin M. that the fact that the Justice Department initially wanted to give Mr. R. H. Biden such a sweetheart deal is scandalous. I remind everyone too that this deal also would likely have indemnified Hunter from any crimes committed prior to 2021, even those which have not yet emerged. I continue to believe that this exposes a frightening degree of rot in the Washington establishment, and if not for the heroism of Judge Maryellen Noreika who smelled a rat and called it out, Hunter’s probationary period would probably be set to expire fairly soon.

    This was a just outcome, but it doesn’t undo the idea that there is a great deal wrong in the United States Department of Justice.

    JVW (ae9999)

  12. I think it’s a reasonable proposition that we don’t generally hold the sins of the sons against the fathers, so I don’t see this as a situation of hypocrisy or dishonesty on the left.

    I agree with that, but, as noted in my comment immediate preceding this one, I think the ridiculous deal that daddy’s Justice Department offered the wayward boy is scandalous, and exposes some deep, deep problems in the Washington establishment.

    If Trump wins in November, this sort of thing will be a clear reason why.

    JVW (0b1b9c)

  13. > If Trump wins in November, this sort of thing will be a clear reason why.

    Which is hilarious, because a DOJ staffed with Trunk apparatchiks will be *substantially worse* in this regard.

    aphrael (99fd6b)

  14. The judge disliked the way the original plea deal was written, and asked a question about its scope (did it block all additional charges from the period in question?) and the prosecutors said no and the defense said it did.

    It wasn’t what I think you would technically call a plea bargain, because it was a diversion from prosecution that would have left Hunter Biden, had he successfully complied with its terms, without a criminal record.

    Sammy Finkelman (c2c77e)

  15. Which is hilarious, because a DOJ staffed with Trunk apparatchiks will be *substantially worse* in this regard.

    Yeah, probably. We’re in a really rough place.

    I have this dream that if Trump wins and the GOP takes the Senate, then Republican Senators will band together and tell Trump that he can’t have his stalwarts in key administrative positions, at least those which require Senate approval.

    I also have this dream that if Biden wins, the GOP will at least seize control of the Senate and they will band together and tell Biden that he cannot fill his cabinet with the usual collection of wild-eyed activists and useless party hacks.

    If Trump wins and the Dems maintain or even expand control of the Senate, then I’m confident they will block Trump’s worst appointees.

    If Biden wins and the Dems maintain or even expand control of the Senate, I have zero confidence they will moderate Biden’s worst inclinations and I am certain we will end up with a cabinet chock-full of wild-eyed activists and useless party hacks.

    JVW (821699)

  16. > I have this dream that if Trump wins and the GOP takes the Senate, then Republican Senators will band together and tell Trump that he can’t have his stalwarts in key administrative positions, at least those which require Senate approval.

    I see no realistic possibility of more than one or two Republican politicians standing up to Trump on *any* issue.

    aphrael (99fd6b)

  17. As I shared yesterday, there are some in the gun rights community who believe that the federal ban of certain persons from possessing firearms is unconstitutional (under Bruen), and there have been lower court rulings agreeing with them; see the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals decision in US v. Daniels, a marijuana possession case.

    And the Third Circuit decided, in Range v. Attorney General, that 18 U.S.C. § 922(g)(1), which makes it unlawful for felons to possess firearms, was unconstitutional as applied to a defendant whose past felony was a nonviolent fraud offense.

    The Supreme Court has yet to decide a case (United States v. Rahimi) challenging the ban on persons with domestic violence restraining orders; the government has appealed the decisions in Daniels and Range to the Supreme Court.

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  18. I see no realistic possibility of more than one or two Republican politicians standing up to Trump on *any* issue.

    You may be right, but if the GOP only has 51 or 52 votes, it would only take three or so stalwarts to thwart what he wants to do. Three stalwarts with enough courage to play the Krysten Sinema/Joe Manchin role in terms of filling the cabinet.

    Maybe the Senate needs to adopt a rule whereby the Attorney General needs to be approved by at least 60 Senators. That might help restore confidence in the job.

    JVW (6e7121)

  19. > Three stalwarts with enough courage to play the Krysten Sinema/Joe Manchin role in terms of filling the cabinet.

    and to guarantee that Trump will turn on them and rally their base to throw them out of office at the earliest opportunity.

    Who is going to take that risk?

    aphrael (99fd6b)

  20. As I shared yesterday, there are some in the gun rights community who believe that the federal ban of certain persons from possessing firearms is unconstitutional (under Bruen), and there have been lower court rulings agreeing with them. . .

    I would guess that the last thing the Biden Family would want to see at this point is Hunter appealing this verdict. At least not until after the election is past us anyway.

    Question for commenters here: Does Hunter now have to lie low and disappear from public view for the rest of the campaign season, or given Trump’s issues will the independent voter accept the idea of Hunter appearing alongside of his father at campaign events?

    I could see the GOP countering the Dems focus on Trump’s legal travails by putting out an ad showing Biden father and son standing side-by-side and captioning it with something like “Felons: convicted and unindicted.”

    JVW (9ed7b2)

  21. aphrael (#9)

    In the case of Ginni Thomas, the reason to eyeball her doings is just to follow the money, because Clarence benefits from the cash she brings in. That family unit has “appearence of impropriety” written all over it.

    The more I hear (today’s Alito story, for example), the more I think that Alito is right in saying his wife has a thing about flags and that he has limited control over it. Wierd, but not the sort of thing that should drive a recusal.

    JVW (#15)

    The GOP will not resist Trump. The way to power in today’s GOP is to not resist him. Best result is that Trump loses and the GOP gets 51 in the Senate.

    Appalled (cd95cc)

  22. See also US v. Jared Michael Harrison, where a District Court in Oklahoma said:

    L

    ike the decision by the Fifth Circuit in Daniels, the District Court emphasized that, historically, firearm prohibitions presented by the government were restricted on the use of a firearm by an intoxicated person, rather than a restriction on possession of a firearm by someone who had ever previously used an intoxicant. These historical prohibitions referenced by the federal government were also much narrower in that they applied to public places; unlike the prohibition in 18 U.S.C. §922 (g)(3), none of the laws referenced were “a total prohibition on possessing any firearm, in any place, for any use, in any circumstance—regardless of whether the person is actually intoxicated or under the influence of a controlled substance.”

    Or US v. Paola Connelly:

    In December 2021, law enforcement in El Paso responded to an emergency call by the neighbor of Paola Connelly, regarding an incident with Connelly’s husband. A search of the home uncovered several firearms registered to Connelly, as well as cannabis, cannabis extract, and a homemade cannabis greenhouse. Connelly informed investigators that she uses cannabis regularly as a sleep aid and to help with anxiety. She was indicted for possession of a firearm in violation of 18 U.S.C. §922 (g)(3). …….

    The District Court for the Western District of Texas echoed the decisions made by US District Court for the Western District of Oklahoma in Harrison and the Fifth Circuit in Daniels and did not find the government’s case persuasive. They dismissed the eight cases cited by the government as failing to be analogous to 18 U.S.C. §922 (g)(3), finding that the historic laws regulated firearms differently and for different reasons. “To summarize, the historical intoxication laws cited by the Government generally addressed specific societal problems with narrow restrictions on gun use, while § 922(g)(3) addresses widespread criminal issues with a broad restriction on gun possession.”……..

    All of these cases, including Daniels and Range, are waiting for the Supreme Court’s ruling in Rahimi.

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  23. I would guess that the last thing the Biden Family would want to see at this point is Hunter appealing this verdict. At least not until after the election is past us anyway.

    Given how long the federal appeals process is, any decision would be after the election anyways. But I have no doubt he will appeal.

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  24. Who is going to take that risk?

    Perhaps a retiring Senator who is an institutionalist and is a strong candidate for retiring such as a Chuck Grassley, Deb Fischer, or Jim Risch, or even a maverick like a Lisa Murkowski or Susan Collins.

    JVW (9bcc90)

  25. I don’t think Hunter will be at any campaign events.

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  26. Given how long the federal appeals process is, any decision would be after the election anyways.

    I don’t think they would want the appeal to be filed before the election, because it undermines their argument that Donald Trump needs to take his medicine and be held accountable for his transgressions.

    JVW (86383f)

  27. I think it was CNN who noted that Hunter’s sentencing would usually come 120 days from the verdict, which would put it right up around October 10, just four weeks from the election. That can’t be good timing for the Biden campaign.

    JVW (da670f)

  28. I have this dream that if Trump wins and the GOP takes the Senate, then Republican Senators will band together and tell Trump that he can’t have his stalwarts in key administrative positions, at least those which require Senate approval.

    LOL! Trump doesn’t necessarily need Senate approval, he could appoint his apparatchiks in an “acting capacity.”

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  29. Who is going to take that risk?

    Perhaps a retiring Senator who is an institutionalist and is a strong candidate for retiring such as a Chuck Grassley, Deb Fischer, or Jim Risch, or even a maverick like a Lisa Murkowski or Susan Collins.

    JVW (9bcc90) — 6/11/2024 @ 9:54 am

    Neither Susan Collins or Lisa Murkowski have proven themselves sufficiently loyal to Trump, since they both voted to impeach him.

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  30. Trump doesn’t necessarily need Senate approval, he could appoint his apparatchiks in an “acting capacity.”

    Which is another Executive abuse, beloved by Barack Obama among others, which Congress is long overdue to fix.

    I swear, no matter which of the two idiots wins this November, if the Legislative Branch doesn’t start to claw back power from the Executive Branch then I think we just keep floating around in our current political miasma until China (or Mexico) finally conquers us.

    JVW (9c4ee0)

  31. @26 my recollection is that Biden stated Trump’s appeal is part of our legal processes, not that he should not appeal, and then if the verdict is upheld that he should “take his medicine and be held accountable for his transgressions”.

    Sam G (4e6c22)

  32. I don’t think Hunter will be at any campaign events.

    I think that consultants will strongly warn the President against having Hunter at any campaign events, but I’ve come to marvel at the sheer weirdness of the Biden family and their inability to decouple family and politics. Won’t surprise me at all if Hunter makes an appearance from time to time. What else does he have to do, and perhaps Joe and Jill figure that it’s easier to keep him on the straight-and-narrow if they continually have them by their side.

    JVW (f9437d)

  33. so I don’t see this as a situation of hypocrisy or dishonesty on the left.

    OF course you don’t. You probably also don’t see this as what happens when the boss uses a heavy hand to help his son and gets caught at it,.

    Kevin M (a9545f)

  34. > OF course you don’t.

    So you’re saying we *should* hold the sins of the children against the parents, as a categorical rule?

    Because what you’re suggesting is that it’s clearly my bias that causes me to think that holding the criminal conviction of an individual against them is different from holding the criminal conviction of a person’s son against that person.

    So to you they’re the same thing, and they should be?

    aphrael (99fd6b)

  35. As I shared yesterday, there are some in the gun rights community who believe that the federal ban of certain persons from possessing firearms is unconstitutional (under Bruen), and there have been lower court rulings agreeing with them; see the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals decision in US v. Daniels, a marijuana possession case.

    Yeah, sure. Embezzlers or tax cheats. But there is adequate reason to keep guns out of the hands of drug addicts. Not only is there the whole diminished capacity argument, there is also the tendency of drug addicts to do desperate things to get more drugs.

    Probably a good argument for alcoholics as well, but that is a line with no clear demarcation among millions of habitual drinkers.

    Kevin M (a9545f)

  36. #30

    Congress is usually content to cede power to the Excecutive, because then they are not responsible for anything. I see a lot of writing about how the system the founders created is strong (and can resist Trump), but the people who administer things distort the system pretty easily, and bad things result.

    Appalled (cd95cc)

  37. I see no realistic possibility of more than one or two Republican politicians standing up to Trump on *any* issue.

    SEVEN Republicans voted to convict Trump in 2021 and several of those will be in the Senate in 2025, as will some who are not beholden to Trump in this year’s election. As we have seen, no Democrat Senator — ever — has voted to convict a Democrat president or cabinet member, so your high moral ground is suspect.

    Kevin M (a9545f)

  38. or even a maverick like a Lisa Murkowski or Susan Collins.

    Both of whom voted “guilty” in 2021 and are unlikely every to get off his sh1t list.

    Kevin M (a9545f)

  39. Not too surprised by the verdict….though it remains bizarre that this case made it to trial. It’s dysfunctional that a reasonable deal couldn’t have been struck. It’s almost like there should have been a mediator draft up a compromise that was fair. Though, I’m almost more bothered by how the wife got rid of the gun…not that she needs to be charged.

    I doubt that this case or the tax case merits prison, but like Trump, there’s karma at play here. The bulk of the public evidence about Hunter is that he’s been out of control and living a life without account. Certainly he’s had a few years now being publicly humiliated and the feature story of one cable news network. He’s pathetic but not exactly Al Capone. There’s got to be some sympathy for someone hounded by addiction.

    AJ_Liberty (5f05c3)

  40. Family members of Presidents trade on their family name in legal ways (W and Hillary) and illegal ways (we can fight about that all day — lets stipulate Billy Carter). It’s not healthy, but the correction is limiting the power and importance of government, not through stupid political name and shaming, or nonsensical or salacious accusations.

    Appalled (cd95cc)

  41. not the sort of thing that should drive a recusal.

    A recusal at the SC, which cannot assign a substitute, should only happen when there is a clear risk that the judge is influenced against his normal predilection.

    These recent recusal arguments are not about Thomas or Alito voting to satisfy an outside interest, but because their quite predictable and uninfluenced vote does not satisfy the interests of the accusers.

    And if you don’t like their accusations, they’ll dig up more.

    Kevin M (a9545f)

  42. Kevin M — Find me the Democratic president who launched an attempted coup…

    I wouldn’t mind, though, an alternate universe where Bill Clinton resigned in 1998.

    Appalled (cd95cc)

  43. > so your high moral ground is suspect.

    it’s not an issue of high moral ground, it’s an issue of absolute terror for the future of the nation.

    aphrael (99fd6b)

  44. > uninfluenced vote

    isn’t that the entire question under dispute, whether or not (or to what degree) their vote was influenced?

    aphrael (99fd6b)

  45. And a big part of what’s driving my distrust of Republican politicians is that for nine years, Trump has run over what would historically have been bright red lines that conservatives would traditionally have protected at all costs, and … it’s had no effect on his support whatsoever.

    Why should I trust the Senate to draw a line on anything when they wouldn’t draw a line against openly trying to steal an election while lying about the other side trying to do it?

    Trump’s behavior in the winter of 2020-2021, and the party’s response to it, revealed the clear truth: there is *no* line Trump could cross where the party would not follow him.

    aphrael (99fd6b)

  46. Who is going to take that risk?

    Good luck throwing Lisa Murkowski out of office. Palin’s candidate beat her in the GOP primary in 2010, so she ran a write-in campaign against both parties and won.

    Much the same for Susan Collins in Maine (not a Trumpist hotbed).

    But sure, Rubio or Cruz live and die on Trump’s whim. But there is a limit to what some Senators will put up with. Again, 7 voted to convict in 2021 and more might have if it was going to work. It took guts for those 7 to make a purely Quixotic vote.

    Kevin M (a9545f)

  47. Family members of Presidents trade on their family name in legal ways (W and Hillary) and illegal ways (we can fight about that all day — lets stipulate Billy Carter). It’s not healthy, but the correction is limiting the power and importance of government, not through stupid political name and shaming, or nonsensical or salacious accusations.

    Those family members who make their living as parasites on the Great Man do so at the risk of being collateral damage when the Great Man comes under fire. What happened to Hunter, and what might happen to Don Jr, would not be proper if applied to Barron or Tiffany.

    Kevin M (a9545f)

  48. Why should I trust the Senate to draw a line on anything when they wouldn’t draw a line against openly trying to steal an election while lying about the other side trying to do it?

    2021: 7 GOP votes to convict.
    1999: 0 Democrats to convict for proven perjury and witness tampering charges.

    Again, your moral high ground is suspect.

    Kevin M (a9545f)

  49. Kevin M — Find me the Democratic president who launched an attempted coup…

    FDR came close, both with court packing and his many attacks on the Constitution, some of which succeeded (e.g. Wickard).

    Trump’s attempt was ugly, but could never have succeeded, even if Pence had gone along. Calling it an attempted coup is an overreach. It was a sound and fury, signifying nothing.

    Kevin M (a9545f)

  50. As I shared yesterday, there are some in the gun rights community who believe that the federal ban of certain persons from possessing firearms is unconstitutional (under Bruen), and there have been lower court rulings agreeing with them. . .

    I would guess that the last thing the Biden Family would want to see at this point is Hunter appealing this verdict. At least not until after the election is past us anyway.

    As you can see from my posts 17 & 22, I am less concerned about Hunter Biden’s criminal case (I really don’t care) than about the state of the Second Amendment. The fact that certain classes of Americans are banned from possessing firearms, without regard to specific circumstances, is more of an affront than anything Hunter Biden (or Donald Trump, who will lose his concealed carry permit) has done.

    The best hope is that the Supreme Court rules in Rahimi or in any of other cases I noted, that the government cannot ban persons, absent a violent felony, from possessing firearms. As Bruen stated, the government needs to demonstrate that firearm regulations have a historical tradition in American history. These bans have no such tradition, as they are relatively recent, dating back to 1968.

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  51. #47

    The case of Hunter Biden is troubling. He’s profiteering on the idea his kinship to Joe gives him influence, and Pop never told him to cut it out. I seriously know of no law that you can apply to stop that. Don’t expect Joe (or Don) to get up on a dias and say “Don’t expect favors from me because you pay my kids lots of money. In fact, you retain him for anything, I will not listen to him or follow his advice.”

    Appalled (cd95cc)

  52. Had J6 been an actual coup attempt, Trump would have been charged with insurrection, if not treason (an armed coup is war against the United States). I think they got it right with the fraud/attempted fraud charges.

    Kevin M (a9545f)

  53. Rip, do you think that a diagnosed schizophrenic should be allowed guns? How about a heroin addict? (if you had met any you’d say no, trust me).

    Kevin M (a9545f)

  54. > 2021: 7 GOP votes to convict.
    > 1999: 0 Democrats to convict for proven perjury and witness tampering charges.

    Because Clinton’s crimes (and note that I reluctantly *supported* impeachment at the time) and Trump’s crimes are equivalent, absolutely. Lying about a blowjob and trying to steal an election are both legally and morally equivalent.

    aphrael (99fd6b)

  55. isn’t that the entire question under dispute, whether or not (or to what degree) their vote was influenced?

    No. The accusers actual concern is their quite predictable, uninfluenced, vote.

    Kevin M (a9545f)

  56. it’s not an issue of high moral ground, it’s an issue of absolute terror for the future of the nation.

    Question: How do you view the current direction of the country under Biden?

    Satisfied or dissatisfied? Wanting more of the same?

    Kevin M (a9545f)

  57. > Question: How do you view the current direction of the country under Biden?

    meh. it’s … neither great nor terrible. kinda middling. could be better, could be worse.

    > absolute terror for the future of the nation.

    the bad things about the Biden presidency are within the normal range of bad; the bad things about a future Trump presidency are things that will undermine the very structure and fabric of the republic in ways that we will not recover from for generations, if ever.

    aphrael (99fd6b)

  58. “It sucks” has a 40% lead over “It’s good”

    Kevin M (a9545f)

  59. And the question is so general as to be meaningless, as it doesn’t provide any info about what is thought to be wrong directionally

    Sam G (4e6c22)

  60. I’ll still take the guy who is not unhinged to have his finger anywhere near the nuclear button….or the other implements of power including the Department of Justice.

    Why toy with yet another impeachable offense and hope the damage is somehow constrained….and trust that Tim Scott, Ted Cruz, and Marco Rubio will do the right thing? All of these people are currently vouching for Trump — Essentially telling us not to worry. Does human nature and history suggest they will admit that they were wrong?

    Can we be sure that there won’t be an acting attorney general Jeffrey Clark…or an acting Secretary of Defense Michael Flynn. Uncertainty begs a conservative response….

    AJ_Liberty (5f05c3)

  61. I’ve added some more Republican reactions to the news.

    Dana (3541ab)

  62. Biden’s current Cabinet is bad enough to be pointing fingers at bogeymen. Yes, Trump is a radical not a conservative. At some point though we’ll need a radical since the status quo is unworkable and mild revisions won’t cut it and 4 more years of dead man walking (assuming he can still do that) will make the situation still less tenable.

    The choice we are offered is terrible. But it is a choice. I am not convinced that Biden’s inaction, with a side of doubling down on failure and a backup plan of a ninny, isn’t worse.

    Kevin M (a9545f)

  63. Trump’s J6 behavior was terrible, but it has been discounted already. Everyone who has made up their mind, or is still undecided, has including that in their thinking. I’m certain that if Biden relies on that as an argument going forward it will change no minds. It’s tiring here, too.

    Kevin M (a9545f)

  64. aphrael (99fd6b) — 6/11/2024 @ 9:33 am

    I see no realistic possibility of more than one or two Republican politicians standing up to Trump on *any* issue.

    Three or four is more likely, and so few only on issues where he goes to the public.

    Sammy Finkelman (c2c77e)

  65. I’ve added some more Republican reactions to the news.

    For whackjob values of “Republican” anyway. How about reactions from abnormal Democrats, too. Maxine Waters and Ilhan Omar, for example.

    I’m far more interested in what Mitch or Mitt have to say.

    Kevin M (a9545f)

  66. Maybe because I’m irreparably so cynical…

    But, these prosecutors tried to sneak an unusual, very generous plea deal that this judge prevented.

    Then, they turned around and conducted a balls-to-the-walls prosecution because they had Hunter dead to rights of those charges.

    My question: if the prosecution was animated to try to push the original sweet heart deal through… what’s stopping the prosecution from purposely tanking their own case? Do judges frown upon that? Could prosecution team be sanctioned if judge believes they’re throwing the case on purpose?

    whembly (86df54)

  67. It’s also pretty similar to what Kamala Harris says about Trump’s conviction.

    Kevin M (a9545f)

  68. Could prosecution team be sanctioned if judge believes they’re throwing the case on purpose?

    Pretty sure they could get disbarred for that.

    Kevin M (a9545f)

  69. Leave it to the chief troll to bring in the perfect level of snark:

    Moments after President Joe Biden’s son Hunter was found guilty on three felony charges for lying on a gun-purchase background-check form, President Donald Trump offered to defend the first son’s Second Amendment rights.

    “Hunter Biden is a terrible person who has funneled millions of dollars from other countries to his father,” Trump said in a statement. “Even so, it is hard to blame him for wanting a gun, which he has a God-given right to have under the 2nd Amendment. Probably the greatest Amendment of them all, if we’re being totally honest.”

    “His father, one of our worst presidents, is more concerned with making the gun control people happy, so he won’t have the courage to step in here and help Hunter. Don’t worry, Joe – I will Save your son after I get elected (for the third time)!”

    NRO has been running items written as straight news but which are highly implausible and can only be seen as parody by a “Humor” tag appended to the top of the page. This one does not have that tag.

    JVW (7ffd10)

  70. Cattagio today:

    Many Americans view the choice before them this fall as a choice between the two episodes in Lafayette Square. They can have a lowbrow authoritarian swinging a cross of gold at his enemies like a truncheon or they can have anomic left-wing miscreants spray-painting “F–S 4 HAMAS” on portraits of George Washington with impunity.

    Is that the choice before us?

    Kevin M (a9545f)

  71. “I’m certain that if Biden relies on that as an argument going forward it will change no minds. It’s tiring here, too.”

    I’ve not seen one J6 campaign commercial yet. The images of that day are shocking. The inaction by Trump confounding. We’ll see if it’s already priced in. Few independents want a President who can’t comprehend that he needed to call that riot off.

    AJ_Liberty (5f05c3)

  72. The guilty verdicts were inevitable given the evidence. As were the responses from the usual suspects. Other than inevitability, there is no similarity. The law judged, ducks quacked.

    nk (197cf8)

  73. “For whackjob values of “Republican” anyway.”

    Stefanik is a “whackjob”? She’s in the #3 GOP leadership position in the House and she says this: “Today is the first step in delivering accountability for the Biden Crime Family.” Really?!

    AJ_Liberty (5f05c3)

  74. > They can have a lowbrow authoritarian swinging a cross of gold at his enemies like a truncheon or they can have anomic left-wing miscreants spray-painting “F–S 4 HAMAS” on portraits of George Washington with impunity.

    One is disrespectful, irritating, and unpleasant, and the other is a long term threat to the integrity of the republic.

    It’s clearly a hard choice.

    aphrael (99fd6b)

  75. > It’s also pretty similar to what Kamala Harris says about Trump’s conviction.

    Again, there’s a difference between “person A’s conviction shows that person A is a bad guy” and “person A’s conviction shows that person A’s father is a bad guy”.

    aphrael (99fd6b)

  76. You’d be laughed out of the writing room for a hit political drama…
    https://www.c-span.org/video/?536297-1/presidentbiden-speaks-gun-violence-prevention-conference

    …on the same day his son’s conviction.

    whembly (86df54)

  77. Rip, do you think that a diagnosed schizophrenic should be allowed guns? How about a heroin addict?

    Kevin M (a9545f) — 6/11/2024 @ 10:48 am

    They should be prohibited only if they are a threat to themselves or the public. The problem is that under 18 U.S.C. § 922(g) there is no individual determination allowed, the law is simply a blanket ban. The felony drunk driver, who is certainly a danger to themselves and others, is treated the same way as the occasional marijuana smoker. Someone could be a “diagnosed schizophrenic” whose symptoms have been treated with drugs and therapy for a decade, and has been able to function in society, would still be banned from possessing firearms if they spent any time, no matter how far in the past, in a mental hospital. The same applies to the ex-heroin addict-they could have stopped taking drugs for decades but still would be banned for life.

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  78. I’ve not seen one J6 campaign commercial yet. ……..

    AJ_Liberty (5f05c3) — 6/11/2024 @ 12:53 pm

    Too early. Wait until September.

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  79. One is disrespectful, irritating, and unpleasant, and the other is a long term threat to the integrity of the republic.

    Well, “swinging a cross of gold at his enemies like a truncheon” I am pretty sure is not to be taken literally.

    Both the rabid pro-Trump side and the hardcore leftists (which I guess we can consider the anti-Trump side since hardly anyone can be truly considered to be “pro-Biden”) are a threat to our country. My biggest concern is that our existing institutions, especially those which wield influence, are predisposed to aggressively go after the pro-Trump side while at the same time minimizing or outright excusing the damage done by the anti-Trump side. It’s this imbalance which concerns me the most.

    As to today’s example, in my comments I have continually been harping not about Hunter Biden’s sordid lifestyle, but the fact that the United States Department of Justice, overseen by President Joseph R. Biden, appears to have originally worked out a plea deal for the First Son which had very unusual terms ridiculously favorable to the accused.

    That’s the scandal, and it’s the sort of inside dealing that we have seen far too much of. Democrats and progressives continue advocating making government agencies more powerful and granting them more authority to regulate our lives, but at the same time it seems that these agencies are continually held less and less accountable for their own bad behavior. That needs to change.

    JVW (68e943)

  80. It is satisfying to see powerful politicians and their families held legally accountable when they do illegal things, primarily because they seem to avoid accountability more than average folks.

    DRJ (f65e25)

  81. Rip,

    There are positions between “non-violent felons can have a gun” and the current law. Perhaps you can’t see a difference between an occasional pot smoke and a heroin addict, but I can. And shortly pot will not be a on that schedule anyway. And if the rule is limited to violent felons, a 5-time busted crack addict would still get his gun even though it doesn’t pass the laugh test.

    The same applies to the ex-heroin addict-they could have stopped taking drugs for decades but still would be banned for life

    I don’t find that part in the law. “who is an unlawful user of or [is] addicted” does not read like a lifetime ban. At least not if they haven’t been convicted of a felony or domestic violence.

    Kevin M (a9545f)

  82. Now, HUNTER may have a case for recovering his gun rights if he can show (SHOW!) that he has been free of his addiction for some time. Since he’s now a convicted felon, the burden is on him, not the state even if the general ban on felons is reformed.

    Kevin M (a9545f)

  83. It is satisfying to see powerful politicians and their families held legally accountable when they do illegal things, primarily because they seem to avoid accountability more than average folks.

    Moreso after their family tried to bend the rules.

    Kevin M (a9545f)

  84. That’s the scandal, and it’s the sort of inside dealing that we have seen far too much of. Democrats and progressives continue advocating making government agencies more powerful and granting them more authority to regulate our lives, but at the same time it seems that these agencies are continually held less and less accountable for their own bad behavior. That needs to change.

    Which is why I feel that allowing these powerful agencies to become institutionally aligned with the Left is a real bad thing. Currently we have a spoils system at the very top, but it does not reach down to all the policy positions. It should. Conversely, we need laws regarding obstruction that also reach down to these levels.

    In the Hunter Biden case, I don’t think that Biden called up Weiss on the phone and dictated an approach, or even that he worked through intermediaries. Instead, I think that the lower level policy-makers knew what was wanted without being asked. There’s a USA or AUSA or Deputy Assistant Undersecretary that needs to be hauled up on charges. Not that that will happen. Instead Hunter will reap the consequences.

    Kevin M (a9545f)

  85. It’s a weaponized DOJ!
    Oh, nevermind.
    The jury had no choice. Hunter practically gave them the evidence.

    Paul Montagu (6a638f)

  86. Fortunately for hunter our system is mercy and forgiveness for those at the top and law and order for those on the bottom. When liberal prosecutors try to dispense a little mercy and forgiveness for those at the bottom the people at the top want them recalled. That why white people were so angry with o.j. simpson verdict. The system was supposed to keep rich white people out of jail and put poor black people in jail. O.j. gamed the system by being black but rich? See sunny von bulow case where whites cheered when he got off. As o.j. said aint america great you can get all the justice you can afford! Remember they tried to sneak a sweatheart plea deal for hunter until publicity about it.

    asset (7b2a5a)

  87. Kevin M (a9545f) — 6/11/2024 @ 3:03 pm

    I don’t find that part in the law. “who is an unlawful user of or [is] addicted” does not read like a lifetime ban. At least not if they haven’t been convicted of a felony or domestic violence.

    Although an addict or user must have violated the law numerous times, nothing counts as a permanent ban until convicted (when he might become a felon and prohibited from owning a gun for that reason.)

    Hunter Biden’s whole defense was that, at the moment he signed that form, he did not consider himself a drug user, even if objectively you had to say that he was, if the idea of being “an unlawful user of drugs” a drug user has any meaning.. He might more legitimately quibble about being an “addict”, which really applies to opioids like heroin.

    Hunter Biden quit in 2019 around the time they began adding other drugs to cocaine. (fentanyl is said to have started being widely substituted for heroin in 2017)

    People can die right after taking cocaine but mostly if they have a genetic defect in processing it and they die the first time they take it. Cocaine also ages and damages the heart. And the brain.

    And it is addictive – except that the person is addicted to his own dopamine which is forced out. Maintenance is not safe, unlike the case with opioids.

    A lot of evidence went into how frequently and recently and immediately afterwards he (probably) used cocaine.

    Sammy Finkelman (e4ef09)

  88. In the Hunter Biden case, I don’t think that Biden called up Weiss on the phone and dictated an approach, or even that he worked through intermediaries. Instead, I think that the lower level policy-makers knew what was wanted without being asked.

    Agreed. By the same token, Bill Clinton never had to tell his 1996 reelection campaign to go out and raise illegal money from sketchy foreign sources. It was just understood that this was what needed to be done in order to ensure their man won. Thus, when the country found out about Charlie Trie and Johnny Chung, Bubba could just shrug his shoulders and honestly say that he never told anybody in his campaign to seek out illegal donations.

    JVW (fea34e)

  89. JVW (fea34e) — 6/11/2024 @ 4:12 pm

    Thus, when the country found out about Charlie Trie and Johnny Chung, Bubba could just shrug his shoulders and honestly say that he never told anybody in his campaign to seek out illegal donations.

    That we don’t know.

    There had to be some supervision by somebody competent to minimize the risk of getting caught.

    Janet Reno appointed a lot of special prosecutors but not for campaign finance violations.

    With Biden it’s more of a machine.

    Sammy Finkelman (e4ef09)

  90. JVW, wasn’t Weiss appointed by Trump? At what point can we assume that the ppl appointed by the previous administration are making at least a good faith effort to execute this investigation?

    Time123 (c778a8)

  91. Bill Clinton I think deliberately involved Vice President Al Gore in making questionable fundraising calls in the White House in order to help ensure his loyalty.

    Sammy Finkelman (e4ef09)

  92. JVW, wasn’t Weiss appointed by Trump? At what point can we assume that the ppl appointed by the previous administration are making at least a good faith effort to execute this investigation?

    Weiss was appointed by Trump and supported by both of Delaware’s Democrat Senators. I don’t believe that Weiss is a scheming Democrat who looked for ways to aid the Biden campaign; instead I think he’s an ineffectual bureaucrat who was too weak to stand up to the bureaucracy when they put obstacles in the way of his investigation. And I think that pretty much all of Washington operates that way, go along to get along. (For what it’s worth, so does corporate America.) And, as Kevin M points out, since the permanent Washington bureaucracy is pretty much suffused with left-leaning types, this means that in general Democrats tend to get favorable treatment. I don’t think it’s any more complicated than that.

    JVW (150007)

  93. <blockquote>There are positions between “non-violent felons can have a gun” and the current law. Perhaps you can’t see a difference between an occasional pot smoke and a heroin addict, but I can.

    The question isn’t whether someone can see the difference between a pot smoker or a heroin addict, the question is whether, under the Bruen standard of gun regulations being “firmly rooted in our nation’s history and tradition,” these bans are constitutional. As I noted above, there have been a number of court decisions that say the ban is unconstitutional, including the Third and Fifth Circuit Courts of Appeal. For example, in US v. Daniels, the Fifth Circuit reversed his conviction for possession of firearms and marijuana joints, for which he was sentenced to nearly 4 years:

    (The appeals court panel) explained that the government had not identified any “Founding-era law or practice of disarming ordinary citizens for drunkenness, even if that intoxication was routine.” “[A]t no point in the 18th or 19th century did the government disarm individuals who used drugs or alcohol at one time from possessing guns at another,” the court wrote. The court acknowledged that “[a] few states banned carrying a weapon while actively under the influence,” but the court found these laws to be inapt as they “did not emerge until well after the Civil War.” Second, to the extent that intoxication was historically viewed as a “short-term illness” or “temporary insanity,” the court reasoned that such an understanding would justify disarming individuals only during actual periods of intoxication. Third, historical regulations that disarmed “dangerous” individuals were motivated by different political and social purposes, and regulated different categories of individuals that did not include “ordinary drunkards,” the court concluded. Based on this analysis, the court held that the government failed to carry its burden of justifying Section 922(g)(3)’s application to Daniels under the Second Amendment.

    Source

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  94. Like many gun regulations, the ban on gun ownership by habitual drug users is generally good policy but unconstitutional if we read the second amendment as an individual, rather than collective militia, right.

    Since we’ve decided to treat the second amendment as protecting an individual right — a decision I disagreed with! — we need to follow up and remove all of the unconstitutional rules, for two reasons:

    * allowing them as to the second amendment creates precedent for allowing similar restrictions on other fundamental rights, including the first amendment

    * removing them will encourage a push for an amendment to allow them.

    aphrael (1797ab)

  95. https://mxmnews.com/article/9adf1a37-ef48-4403-9c77-e20c5eab6802

    Ho hum. Nothing to see here. Just Speaker Pelosi admitting she was responsible on Jan 6th.

    NJRob (eb56c3)

  96. Where’s the evidence that there was “pressure” put on this Trump-appointed prosecutor to agree to a sweetheart deal? Is this one of those, I know it when I see it deals?

    What’s the appropriate outcome for a first-time non-violent gun charge….where the individual only possessed the weapon for 11 days? I would think that built into being an addict is not thinking clearly. It’s not like he was running guns or sticking up gas stations for crack money.

    What’s the appropriate outcome for a tax charge where the tax bill, interest, and fines are paid in full? Yes, yes with a lot of help from a family “friend” but we’re not exactly talking Wesley Snipes here. If Snipes got 3 years and served 28 months, what’s reasonable for old Hunter whose liability was about 1/5 as big?

    Personally I’d give him 6mos in prison for the tax charges and diversion for the gun charge. Maybe he serves half of that. Now how does prison work for a President’s son? Does the secret service go in with him…or do we devolve to house arrest…or probation?

    There’s a lot of inuendo here….but is the plea deal really a corruption of justice? I agree that the tax matter is not…what’s the word….piss-ant, but taking in the totality of facts and logistics….what is a reasonable sentence? I’m not hearing much here except that the DoJ is currupt? Not much evidence of that though.

    AJ_Liberty (c149da)

  97. Law and order! Now lets check every n.r.a. member’s records. It could help biden in november if enough n.r.a. members are in the slammer. Stake out gun stores and shows and have the paddy wagons at the ready.

    asset (6008c2)

  98. He might more legitimately quibble about being an “addict”, which really applies to opioids like heroin.

    He might quibble about being an addict, just as heavy habitual drinkers deny they are alcoholics, but that doesn’t depend on what drug is being used. I effing guarantee you that addiction to crack, or cocaine, or meth, or pills is not only possible, it is common. Even pot addiction happens. It’s even a stereotype. Cheech & Chong made a career out of it.

    Here is a modern definition of addiction: persisting in using a substance in the face of known, adverse consequences. It’s why people fail scheduled drug tests they’ve know about for a week.

    Kevin M (a9545f)

  99. And it is addictive – except that the person is addicted to his own dopamine which is forced out. Maintenance is not safe, unlike the case with opioids.

    Sammy, and I say this with as much kindness as I can muster: You don’t know the first thing about this subject, and be glad you don’t. The physical addiction, which differs from substance to substance is almost unimportant. People go into detox, have their system thoroughly cleaned out and they are loaded again before the sun sets on the day they get out. It’s mostly behavioral, not physical, and this is why most rehab stints fail to succeed.

    Kevin M (a9545f)

  100. Like many gun regulations, the ban on gun ownership by habitual drug users is generally good policy but unconstitutional if we read the second amendment as an individual, rather than collective militia, right.

    Why? Modern gun laws depend on an individual’s behavior. Law abiding, responsible people. The felony thing is one measure of that. People argue that it is too blunt an instrument, but the idea that it is based on is still valid.

    The militia thing, OTOH, was used as a way to disarm blacks after Reconstruction. Guess who wasn’t allowed in the militia.

    Kevin M (a9545f)

  101. There’s a lot of inuendo here….but is the plea deal really a corruption of justice? I agree that the tax matter is not…what’s the word….piss-ant, but taking in the totality of facts and logistics….what is a reasonable sentence? I’m not hearing much here except that the DoJ is currupt? Not much evidence of that though.

    For the last time, AJ_Liberty, and I’m kind of starting to lose my patience with having to explain this continually, the biggest controversy in the “original deal” is that it contained language which could have — and the Biden defense team believe did — foreclose the possibility that Hunter Biden could be charged for any crime he may have committed prior to 2020.

    I wrote two posts on consecutive days about this matter about 46 weeks ago when Hunter had his first appearance in court after the “sweetheart” deal was crafted and Judge Noreika rejected it. Both of them are pretty extensive. Here is the one from July 26 and here is the one from July 27. Please feel free to read up on both of them to determine why I believe the Biden Justice Department did not act with integrity here. You commented on the July 26 story, so certainly it ought to ring a bell even if you’ve forgotten the details nearly one year later.

    And I’ll conclude by saying what I said back then and repeated earlier today. The real hero in this is Judge Maryellen Norekia, who rather than just rubber-stamping some plea bargain that both sides seemed to have cooked up actually took the time to carefully read it and determine that it wasn’t up to what she felt ought to be the proper legal standard. We need more jurists like her on the bench.

    JVW (1c7136)

  102. Now lets check every n.r.a. member’s records.

    Sure! You get started on that, asset. And in the meantime, we’ll check the financial records of every member of the ACLU. Ought to be fun!

    JVW (f9437d)

  103. @100 The N.R.A. was founded back then to protect black men and a few women’s second amendment right’s before wayne lapierre converted it into a corrupt cash cow for his personal use!

    asset (6008c2)

  104. @102 thats why I pay my taxes to fund the fbi and justice department to go after corrupt organizations like the n.r.a. The A.C.L.U’s memebers have been looked at since ms. hoover’s time. remember nixon’s enemies list and ed meese’s justice department. Ever here the term 5th amendment communists and roy cohn?

    asset (6008c2)

  105. Ever here the term 5th amendment communists and roy cohn?

    Ever “here” of Alger Hiss and Julius Rosenberg?

    JVW (f25238)

  106. > Even pot addiction happens.

    Sure, although it’s much less common than people think.

    Psilocybin addiction, though, is *incredibly* rare.

    aphrael (1797ab)

  107. @105 ever here of the hollywood 10 and the black list? When joe mccarthy wasn’t defending the nazi killers of our prisoners at Malmedy. He was waving around a blank piece of paper saying it was a list of 100 card carrying members of the communist party in the state department. Maybe you agree with robert oppenheimers security clearance being taken away?

    asset (6008c2)

  108. The rot of whataboutism is so unbelievably deep in this country.

    Leviticus (02524a)

  109. Maybe you agree with robert oppenheimers security clearance being taken away?

    In college one of my professors was Philip Morrison, who worked at Los Alamos with Oppenheimer and crew. He died nearly 20 years ago (he was already officially a professor emeritus by the time I knew him). He helped build the atomic bomb, but he became a staunch critic of nuclear armaments in the post-war era.

    Despite his beliefs, and despite being a former comrade of Oppy’s in the communist party, Prof. Morrison apparently believed that it was the correct decision to strip Dr. Oppenheimer of his security clearance. A year or so after his death, a pretty comprehenisve book about the whole Red Scare and Oppenheimer’s eccentricities came out. It included some source material interviews with Philip Morrison, and in an interesting tidbit recounted in one of the book’s endnotes, Morrison apparently admitted that when he was asked by investigators whether he believed Oppenheimer posed a security threat, Morrison responded affirmatively.

    So yeah, I think I would have supported revoking his clearance.

    JVW (b91373)

  110. Oppenheimer had been Morrison’s doctoral advisor, by the way, so it’s safe to say he had the basis to form a pretty solid impression of the man’s character.

    JVW (fae3ae)

  111. Despite his beliefs, and despite being a former comrade of Oppy’s in the communist party, Prof. Morrison apparently believed that it was the correct decision to strip Dr. Oppenheimer of his security clearance.

    JVW (b91373) — 6/11/2024 @ 9:00 pm

    A brilliant scientific mind is no guarantee of sound judgment when it comes to politics and economics.

    norcal (351f32)

  112. Pelosi can say whatever in the heat of the moment, but she didn’t invite tens of
    thousands of MAGA zealots to DC on J6 with the tease that it would be “wild”, and she
    didn’t invite a couple of warm-up acts who said things like “trial by combat” and “today is
    the day American patriots start taking down names and kicking ass”, and she didn’t give
    a bombastic speech to those right-wingers with inciteful language such as “we fight like
    hell, and if you don’t fight like hell you’re not going to have a country anymore”, and she
    didn’t not call the authorities to request the National Guard when the rioting
    was underway.

    I get that MAGA Nation is still trying to blame-shift their responsibility for the J6
    insurrection onto anyone else but themselves, but this is ridiculous. One man is
    responsible, and it’s not Schumer or some Democrat or Antifa. It’s Trump.

    The thing is, neither Nancy nor McConnell (who has equal responsibility for
    decision making on the Capitol Police Board) had the prescience to anticipate a right-
    wing insurrection at the Capitol, so they didn’t request National Guard beforehand.
    Neither did Trump, and he had the benefit of having an FBI and DHS that actually had intel on
    impending violence. But sure, it’s Nancy’s fault that she didn’t plan well enough to
    prevent an assassination attempt on her life. We’re truly in f-cking BizarroWorld here.

    Paul Montagu (a488d6)

  113. Ack, formatting snafu.

    Paul Montagu (a488d6)

  114. Unconstitutional, ummoshtitutional. A druggie with a gun is a clear and present danger. (Which, as you know, is the strictest constitutional scrutiny, and applied to prior restraints on free speech.)

    nk (08d68e)

  115. Paul,

    for the last time. Trump asked for more security. She rejected it. Have a good day.

    Keep covering for leftists.

    NJRob (eb56c3)

  116. No, he didn’t, Rob. His own Acting SecDef was in the room with Trump and testified to that. Ornato’s testimony was found less than credible.
    https://www.justsecurity.org/93316/anatomy-of-a-conspiracy-theory-and-a-smear-still-no-evidence-of-trump-order-for-10000-guard-on-january-6th/

    Paul Montagu (39a439)

  117. Enjoy your right-wing echo chamber. That’s where all the cool cultists hang out.

    Paul Montagu (39a439)

  118. Is Ornato the gentleman who said one thing in the committee hearing and another on Trumpvda and then, according to him, got a coldness in the feet when Liz Cheney “threatened” to have him called back to again testify under oath?

    nk (08d68e)

  119. @115

    I’m amazed that anyone still pushes that line, which has been thoroughly debunked many times over. It’s not a matter of covering for leftists, but of telling the truth.

    Roger

    Roger (59229f)

  120. Leftists love calling things that are true debunked. Hunter’s laptop was debunked. Covid as a lab leak was debunked. IRS going after conservative groups was debunked. And on and on.

    Left wing echo chamber.

    NJRob (d16824)

  121. >> Even pot addiction happens.

    Sure, although it’s much less common than people think.

    It’s common enough

    Kevin M (a9545f)

  122. Maybe you agree with robert oppenheimers security clearance being taken away?

    Oppenheimer’s affiliations and Communist past would have been enough to deny a clearance to most people in the 1950s (or 60s or 70s or 80s). To refer to the post-war period that featured Stalin and the Soviets crushing eastern Europe and attempting to expand socialism by force everywhere else as “the Red Scare” is disingenuous at best.

    Perhaps the methods used were wrong and some of the witnesses were acting with corrupt motives, but the outcome was not unusual.

    BTW, I also think that Dalton Trumbo was a rotten piece of work and a paid Soviet agent of influence.

    Kevin M (a9545f)

  123. RIP basketball legend Jerry West (86).

    Rip Murdock (816fe1)

  124. I also think that Dalton Trumbo was a rotten piece of work and a paid Soviet agent of influence.

    How so, exactly?

    Rip Murdock (816fe1)

  125. “Left wing echo chamber.”

    Hardly. Anyone who knows me knows that I am every bit as critical of the cultural left, if not more. In this polarized atmosphere, centrists tend to get tarred as being on the right or left, depending on their interlocutor.

    Roger (59229f)

  126. Hi Rip:

    Not sure if Dalton was paid by Stalin’s folks. He certainly pushed a rather icky version of CPUSA sentiment in a number of films. See Tender Comrade, The Remarkable Andrew, Heaven With a Barbed Wire Fence.

    That said, he’s also for a lot of very good scripts (Kitty Foyle, Spartacus, Gun Crazy).

    Appalled (af1120)

  127. Hi Rip:

    Not sure if Dalton was paid by Stalin’s folks. He certainly pushed a rather icky version of CPUSA sentiment in a number of films. See Tender Comrade, The Remarkable Andrew, Heaven With a Barbed Wire Fence.

    That said, he’s also for a lot of very good scripts (Kitty Foyle, Spartacus, Gun Crazy).

    Appalled (af1120) — 6/12/2024 @ 8:02 am

    I thought it was because Audrey Hepburn was sending coded messages to the Soviets by the way she crossed her legs in Roman Holiday (for which he won an Academy Award.) 😉

    Tender Comrade was written when the US and the USSR were allies; at the same time (1944) Trumbo wrote Thirty Seconds Over Tokyo. The Remarkable Andrew and Heaven With a Barbed Wire Fence are about as obscure as you can get. Heaven is better known as being the first major roles for Glenn Ford and Richard Conte than Communist propaganda. It was Kirk Douglas who recruited Trumbo to write Spartacus and publicly credit him (along with Otto Preminger to write Exodus) that helped break the Hollywood blacklist. Don’t forget The Brave One, which won Trumbo the (last) Academy Award for Best Story (as Robert Rich).

    The influence of the Hollywood Ten on the American political scene (and culture) has been way overblown.

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  128. JVW, your point about the plea deal is a good one. Your broader point about ideological bias in the federal agencies is also good. But I’m not sure i buy it with the DOJ and other LEO agencies. From what I’ve seen the institutional bias there is towards the mission; of getting convictions, of keeping the country safe, of stemming the flow of illegal aliens etc.

    From what I read in the trial transcript there wasn’t any hedging from the DOJ. When they were asked what was covered they promptly stated that it was just the charges listed and not anything else.

    Poor work product for sure, but absent some other compelling evidence it doesn’t seem like corruption.

    I agree with you the the judge in that case did a good job.

    Time123 (316585)

  129. @119, Roger, NJRob thinks anyone that disagrees with him his a radical left wing communist that hates haters America and is knowingly pushing propaganda to destroy the country and usher in Gay dictatorship that will ship all the Christians off to death camps.

    Don’t take him too seriously.

    Time123 (316585)

  130. Rip,

    Most thngs about the Hollywood Ten was overblown — the alleged harm they did. Also, the catastrophic fascist harm that was allegedly done to them.

    If I see that a movie has Dalton Trumbo in the credits, I will make a point of watching it. Accordingly, I have seen all the movies I cited (not the Brave One, though). There is a Russian commune that comes out of nowhere in Heaven that makes a bad movie worse. Tender Comrades doesn’t feature Russians despite the title — its just the propaganda content is very high and quite ludicrous. (Pity poor Ginger Rogers — she dares to interrupt Robert Ryan reading a very important magazine article.) The Remarkable Andrew is, indeed, quite remarkable.

    Appalled (af1120)

  131. @96 AJ, if I read JVW correctly he’s not alleging an explicit quid pro quo between the president and the prosecutor, but a culture that would incentive this prosecutor to reach a plea deal that may be more lenient then another randomly selected defendant would likely get.

    Which doesn’t feel outlandish to me, the crime isn’t frequently charged and prosecting the presidents Son has got to be Tricky. He’ll get the best representation money can buy and any mistake (for or against him) will be widely shared by partisan’s in the media.

    Honestly had the original plea deal been clearly restricted to the specifically listed items diversion for the gun crime would have felt ‘fair’ to me.

    Time123 (316585)

  132. Time123 (316585) — 6/12/2024 @ 10:39 am

    I call out trolls and frauds.I have zero tolerance for mobys and liars.

    Have a nice day.

    NJRob (d16824)

  133. Unconstitutional, ummoshtitutional. A druggie with a gun is a clear and present danger. (Which, as you know, is the strictest constitutional scrutiny, and applied to prior restraints on free speech.)

    nk (08d68e) — 6/12/2024 @ 3:16 am

    At one time, but the “clear and present danger test” was abandoned by the Supreme Court in Brandenburg v. Ohio (1969) and replaced with a two prong test: (1) speech can be prohibited if it is “directed at inciting or producing imminent lawless action” and (2) it is “likely to incite or produce such action.”

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  134. @96 AJ, if I read JVW correctly he’s not alleging an explicit quid pro quo between the president and the prosecutor, but a culture that would incentive this prosecutor to reach a plea deal that may be more lenient then another randomly selected defendant would likely get.

    Prosecutors are always incentivized to reach plea deals; they would rather have guilty pleas than go to trial. That’s why they frequently overcharge defendants, hoping they will plead out to lesser charges.

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  135. @96

    Where’s the evidence that there was “pressure” put on this Trump-appointed prosecutor to agree to a sweetheart deal? Is this one of those, I know it when I see it deals?

    There’s a lot of inuendo here….but is the plea deal really a corruption of justice? I agree that the tax matter is not…what’s the word….piss-ant, but taking in the totality of facts and logistics….what is a reasonable sentence? I’m not hearing much here except that the DoJ is currupt? Not much evidence of that though.

    AJ_Liberty (c149da) — 6/11/2024 @ 7:25 pm

    I highly encourage you to read this:
    https://www.nationalreview.com/2024/06/the-dojs-undeserved-victory-lap-over-hunters-convictions/

    whembly (c88dc4)

  136. https://www.nationalreview.com/2024/06/the-dojs-undeserved-victory-lap-over-hunters-convictions/
    In fact… I’ll highlight some sections:


    But the defendant was named Robert Hunter Biden and the federal prosecutor was the abnormally political David Weiss, so the prosecution took six years — and if Weiss and the Biden Justice Department had had their way, it wouldn’t have happened at all.

    More from
    ANDREW C. MCCARTHY

    Steve Bannon’s Remand Is Consistent with the Law
    Biden Won’t Pardon His Son — at Least Until after Election Day
    David Weiss was appointed the Delaware U.S. attorney during the Trump years. I’d be stunned if Trump could pick him out of a lineup. In the state from which Joe Biden was a U.S. senator for three decades before becoming vice president, Weiss got the appointment only due to the recommendation of two Biden-allied Democratic senators. In the Trump years, Democratic senators blocked numerous presidential appointees. Weiss, by contrast, sailed through solely thanks to enthusiastic support from Democrats.

    When President Biden took office, Weiss was the only Trump-appointed U.S. attorney who was not defrocked. (John Durham was not fired, but be was supplanted in Connecticut by a Biden appointee.) By then, for over two years, Weiss had had Hunter Biden dead-to-rights on the gun case and on equally overwhelming evidence of tax offenses, yet he had taken no action. Indeed, as whistleblower agents have detailed, Weiss and his subordinates thwarted the efforts of investigators to move aggressively on the cases. Throughout that time frame, Biden AG Merrick Garland trumpeted Weiss’s status as a “Trump-appointee” as a convenient excuse to shrink from an action he was desperate to avoid but which DOJ regulations emphatically called for: appoint a special counsel with a reputation for competence and integrity, recruited from outside the government, who would take over the case in lieu of the hopelessly conflicted Biden Justice Department and its obeisant Delaware U.S. attorney.

    During the first three years of the Biden administration, Weiss spent most of the time sitting on his hands as the statute of limitations chewed up the Biden investigation.

    Much attention has been paid to the failed sweetheart plea deal on which Weiss colluded with Hunter Biden’s lawyers. That’s entirely appropriate, but it is easy to forget that Weiss tried to make the case go away with no charges at all. That became politically impossible once the whistleblower revelations about Biden Justice Department interference in the investigation became public.

    It was only at that point that Weiss’s objective became the formulation of a plea bargain that would
    (a) make it look like the president’s son was being held accountable,

    (b) ensure that the president’s son faced no imprisonment on either the gun felonies or the evasion of tax on over $4 million in income (i.e., the evasion crimes still left after Weiss let the statute of limitations lapse on the earlier ones), and

    (c) concoct a vaguely worded, carefully hidden immunity term that would prevent Hunter from being prosecuted on any crimes arising out of the 2014–19 timeframe — covered in a “statement of facts” (see here, “Attachment A — Statement of Facts”) that was obviously written by Hunter’s lawyers rather than prosecutors.

    Meantime, Weiss played a double game. Publicly, he echoed Garland’s position that he (Weiss) was the ultimate decisionmaker on whether and where to file charges against the president’s son. But behind closed doors, as his subordinate Lesley Wolf repeatedly blocked agents from pursuing leads that could implicate President Biden, Weiss told investigating agents that he really wanted to pursue the case but was being thwarted by Main Justice.

    Clearly, Garland and Weiss were trying to pull off a hat trick:
    (1) making it appear that there was a good faith investigation of Hunter Biden, while

    (2) refraining from bringing any actual charges against Hunter Biden, and

    (3) seeking an opportune time to drop the investigation on the pretext that the evidence was insufficient — even as Republican-controlled House committees gathered mounting evidence of Hunter’s lucrative influence-peddling and perusal of his laptop data kept yielding more proof of criminality.

    He has never, however, lost sight of the highest objective: to protect the president.

    Five years after the fact — meaning nearly five years after a defendant who was not President Biden’s son would have been charged, convicted, and sentenced — Weiss finally indicted Hunter Biden in Delaware. Again, that’s Weiss’s own district, so he could have brought the case at any time, without any plausible claim that he was being obstructed by Biden-appointees. Weiss chose to delay. Because he did, Hunter now has a Second Amendment defense based on the Supreme Court’s Bruen case — decided in 2022, over three years after Hunter should have been charged. It may be an improbable claim on appeal — it certainly did Hunter no good in the trial court — but it is a claim he has solely because of Weiss’s strategic foot-dragging.

    And pay attention to next section AJ:

    In his most energetic move in the long investigation, Weiss has brought a peculiar case against Alexander Smirnov. He is the former FBI informant, previously dubbed “highly credible,” who implicated President Biden (while he was vice-president) in a bribery scheme with Burisma, the corrupt Ukrainian energy company that paid Hunter millions and thus enjoyed access to Joe’s influence. Weiss’s Smirnov probe appears to have featured a perjury trap, and the indictment sports gratuitous disclosures about Russian espionage — a topic the government typically resists addressing in public documents. A cynical commentator– not moi, of course — might wonder aloud whether the point of the Smirnov charges is to help the president fend off evidence of his complicity in the family influence-peddling business. In truth, the allegations against Smirnov — assuming they can be backed up by real proof — do not put a dent in the corruption evidence amassed by House Republicans. But Democrats surely appreciate the talking point.

    At last, as the statute of limitations continued evaporating the Hunter Biden tax case, Weiss finally brought a tax indictment. It was so intentionally overdue that the 2014 and 2015 tax years — the Vice President Joe Biden tax years — could no longer be charged. Even without those crimes, it is highly probable that Hunter will face the imposition of a prison sentence due to the overwhelming evidence and high-dollar amount of tax evasion. Nevertheless, Weiss has achieved the Biden Justice Department’s main goals.

    What goals?

    First, although Hunter is charged with avoiding taxes on the huge windfalls he received by monetizing his father’s political influence, Weiss studiously avoided mentioning President Biden in the indictment, much less implicating him. What’s more, expect that Hunter’s lawyers will remind the public that Weiss already stipulated to the afore-described, hilariously entitled “statement of facts” filed with the court in connection with the failed sweetheart plea deal. Weiss thus agreed to a “factual” recitation that claims Hunter earned big fees because he was a high-end lawyer and businessman . . . not a drug-addled ne’er-do-well cashing in on his father’s political power.

    Second, because Weiss declined to charge Hunter Biden for five years despite boatloads of damning evidence, the chance that the president’s son will face real justice and accountability for his crimes is nil. Hunter will not be sentenced on the gun convictions until later this year; even if a light prison sentence is imposed, he is sure to be released on bail pending appeal — an appeal that will not be decided until sometime next year, if then.

    Do read the whole article.

    whembly (c88dc4)

  137. Unconstitutional:

    North Dakota voters on Tuesday approved a ballot measure that sets age limits on congressional candidates.

    The measure creates a new article in the North Dakota Constitution entitled “Congressional Age Limits,” that establishes “no person may be elected or appointed to serve a term or a portion of a term representing North Dakota in the U.S. Senate or the U.S. House of Representatives if that person could be 81 years old by December 31 of the year immediately preceding the end of the term, and any such person is prohibited from appearing on the ballot.”
    ………..
    Some legal experts view the measure as a test case for revisiting a 1995 U.S. Supreme Court ruling against congressional term limits. A state legislative panel attached a $1 million cost estimate to the measure in anticipation of a lengthy legal challenge, The Associated Press reported.
    ………..
    Republican U.S. Sen. Kevin Cramer, who had no primary challenge to his re-election bid, opposed the measure, saying voters should be able to choose whomever they want.
    ………..

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  138. RIP Newsweek political correspondent Howard Fineman (75).

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  139. @131

    Which doesn’t feel outlandish to me, the crime isn’t frequently charged and prosecting the presidents Son has got to be Tricky.

    Time123 (316585) — 6/12/2024 @ 10:48 am

    That statement is manifestly not true.

    Wanna know why?

    Prosecutorial descretion.

    Only way they DON’T bring this case, is whether or not they don’t routinely prosecute this law. Because if there’s no recent cases in any of the jurisdictions, then Weiss could’ve staked the claim that they simply don’t prosecute, deeming not worth the resources.

    That’s why you don’t see federal convictions for just possessing weed. It’s simply not worth it.

    I see about 300 prosecutions for lying on form 4473, with no other apparent non-firearm prosectuions.

    I do not see any federal prosecution for use/possession of weed. (I’ll stipulate that I may be searching it wrong, and happy if someone corrects).

    whembly (c88dc4)

  140. There is something wrong with having to submit a form to enjoy a constitutional right.

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  141. Here’s what I didn’t see in the Hunter trial.

    • Hunter and his devotees didn’t piss and moan almost daily on social media about a “witch hunt” and “weaponized DOJ”, despite the fact that a Trump-appointed Republican US Attorney has investigated Hunter since late 2018. Far as we know, Weiss didn’t receive death threats or other threats from the Hunter Claque.

    • Hunter and his passionate followers didn’t constantly whine about a Trump-appointed judge presiding over the gun case, and he didn’t impugn her integrity or bring up the fact that most of her political donations were to Republicans, nor did he attack her staff and family. Far as we know, Noreika didn’t receive death threats or other threats from the Hunter Tribe.

    • Hunter and his gang didn’t gripe about the composition of the jury, or name-call them or accuse them political bias. Far as we know, there was no apparent attempt to dox the jurors, nor were there any threats. One of the jurors was so unthreatened that he appeared on cable news yesterday and spoke with reason and compassion about how the twelve came to their verdict.

    • Hunter didn’t b!tch and complain about the verdict, and didn’t scream that it was a “disgrace”. Instead, he exploded with this temper tantrum…

    “I am more grateful today for the love and support I experienced this last week from Melissa, my family, my friends, and my community than I am disappointed by the outcome. Recovery is possible by the grace of God, and I am blessed to experience that gift one day at a time.”

    • Hunter didn’t get cited for contempt one single time, let alone ten times, because he wasn’t hit with a gag order in the first place.

    I can’t help but notice the staggering difference in conduct between the two defendants, where one behaved like a regular citizen, while the Rage Machine is running for president.

    It reminds of a piece I referenced last March, on the subject of habituation, which is a mental process that allows us to accept more and more outrageous conduct to the point we get used to it and can handle even more helpings of outrageous conduct, and it explains how morally upright people can ultimately participate in or excuse atrocities against other humans such as genocide.

    Well, for me, I’m Shooter McGavin

    Shooter: That Happy Gilmore, he’s a real crack-up, isn’t he? Yeah. I mean, he’s a hoot!
    Doug (tour director): Well, he’s bringing in some big crowds.
    Shooter: Yeah. You know, what was great today, one of his fans mooned me and had “Happy” written on his ass. “Ha” on the one cheek, and then, sure enough, “P-P-Y” right there on the other. I think it’s great what he’s doing for the sport.
    Doug: Well, yeah, I’m beginning to come around.
    Shooter: Yeah, everyone seems to be coming around. WELL, I’M NOT, DOUG!

    Is Trump so “baked in” that we just passively accept this behavior? To me, no, so I’m with Shooter, I’m NOT, even if I lose the debate, just like Shooter lost the Tour Championship to Happy, because it’s unacceptable for a grown man to behave this way.

    Paul Montagu (383f45)

  142. @140

    There is something wrong with having to submit a form to enjoy a constitutional right.

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8) — 6/12/2024 @ 11:58 am

    There’s an argument that submitting a form to self-incriminate violates that 6th Amendment.

    whembly (86df54)

  143. @139, My understanding is that the charge is the sort of thing that is added on with other charges, or a charge they use when they’re investigating someone and can’t find anything more serious they can prove. Possession of weed would be similar.

    My point is that Hunter was selected for investigation because of politics and because he’s a crack head this charge was easy to prove. Had he not been politically prominent I doubt he’d have been investigated and charged with this.
    I’m fine that he was investigated and convicted FWIW.

    Time123 (316585)

  144. This is deceptive and a good example of why this guy’s editorials should be read skeptically.

    When President Biden took office, Weiss was the only Trump-appointed U.S. attorney who was not defrocked.

    In the context of the article this statement is meant to imply that Weiss was kept on because Biden viewed him as an ally.

    In the reporting at the time it was made clear that Weiss was kept on because he was investigating the presidents Son. Firing him would create a conflict of interest that leaving him in place eliminated. Because he was appointed and lead the investigation under the previous administration there would be no way for Biden to have improperly influenced his appointment to the case.

    I think the author knows that. Withholding that fact from his audience is deceptive.

    Time123 (316585)

  145. @145

    When President Biden took office, Weiss was the only Trump-appointed U.S. attorney who was not defrocked.

    In the context of the article this statement is meant to imply that Weiss was kept on because Biden viewed him as an ally.

    That’s exactly the context.

    It’s apparent Weiss *is* a Biden ally by dutifully slow walking the investigation to the degree that any possible indictment would be time-barred.

    Which gives Joe Biden the necessary cover.

    whembly (86df54)

  146. whembly —

    National Review is paywalled, so I wont be reading the whole thing.

    I guess I am trying to understand what the beef in McCarthy’s article is truly — which I guess is a belief H. Biden was undercharged. This is what we have Congressional committee’s for — getting at the truth. But since Comer and gang very foolishly had their conclusion before they got through the facts — they blew their credibility.

    The only valuable part of Comer’s hearing was bringing whistleblowers to light regarding Hunter potentially being undercharged. However, that wasn’t terriby exciting, so we were treated to the bogus bribery accusations that were part of the Trump/Giuliani miasma of the first Trump impeachment. And now the whole thing looks like a sad joke generated to make Trump feel good about his own scumminess.

    Appalled (af1120)

  147. Here’s a decent summary of what’s going on with Smirnov.

    https://www.cbsnews.com/news/fbi-informant-lied-investigators-about-bidens-business-dealings-special-counsel-says/

    According to a grand jury indictment unsealed in the Central District of California, Smirnov allegedly began speaking with his FBI handler in 2017 to discuss Burisma Holdings, Limited, a Ukrainian holding company that hired Hunter Biden to sit on its board.

    It was not until June 2020, three years later, that Smirnov allegedly told the FBI about two meetings in 2015 or 2016 in which he said he was told that the company was paying Hunter Biden on serve on Burisma’s board to “protect us, through his dad, from all kinds of problems.” Later, Smirnov allegedly told investigators that “that they had specifically paid $5 million each to Public Official 1, when he was in office, and Businessperson 1 so that ‘[Businessperson 1] will take care of all those issues through his dad,” according to charging documents.

    “The Defendant made these statements to the Handler in June 2020, when Public Official 1 was a candidate for President of the United States and the presumptive nominee of one of the two major political parties,” the indictment alleged.

    Prosecutors alleged both statements, which were memorialized in an FBI record form, “were false, as the Defendant knew.”

    “No such statements were made to the Defendant because, in truth and fact, Defendant met with officials from Burisma for the first time in 2017, after Public Official 1 left office in January 2017, and after the then-Ukrainian Prosecutor General had been fired in February 2016,” the special counsel said.

    No idea if this puts a dent in the GOPs claims or not as I haven’t seen a bill of particulars, but it seems material that a key witness may have been lying to the FBI.

    Also, Sorkin (the UKE prosecutor General) was using his office to shield Burisma

    Shokin’s office also stepped in to help Zlochevsky, the head of Burisma.
    British authorities had frozen $23 million in a money-laundering probe, but Shokin’s office
    failed to send documents British authorities needed to prosecute Zlochevsky. The case
    eventually unraveled and the assets were unfrozen.
    In October 2015, Ukrainians staged a protest outside Poroshenko’s home calling for Shokin’s
    removal.

    If you have the patience you can find articles about the British investigation from before this became relevant to US politics.

    Time123 (316585)

  148. When President Biden took office, Weiss was the only Trump-appointed U.S. attorney who was not defrocked.

    In the context of the article this statement is meant to imply that Weiss was kept on because Biden viewed him as an ally.

    That’s exactly the context.

    It’s apparent Weiss *is* a Biden ally by dutifully slow walking the investigation to the degree that any possible indictment would be time-barred.

    It’s a shame the GOP is so incompetent as to appoint a Federal Prosecutor that’s an ‘dutiful’ ally of the Biden’s and then compound that error by putting that person in charge of investigating Hunter.

    Too bad the only possible explanation for the observable fact patterns are this vague and broad reaching conspiracy you allege.

    /snark

    Time123 (316585)

  149. There’s an argument that submitting a form to self-incriminate violates that 6th Amendment.

    whembly (86df54) — 6/12/2024 @ 12:12 pm

    That’s certainly true, especially when it comes to medical marijuana users. The either have the choice of lying on Form 4473, or telling the truth and be denied their constitutional rights.

    When a prospective gun owner goes to purchase a firearm, they are required to disclose their use of medical marijuana on ATF Form 4473. If the individual identifies as a medical marijuana user, or does not complete the form, the individual will be denied the ability to purchase a firearm. If the individual conceals their medical marijuana use, they could be subject to violations under § 924(a) and for the additional fraudulent misrepresentation of their status as a marijuana user. Similarly, § 922(g) imposes a duty on current gun owners who begin using medical marijuana to voluntarily relinquish their possession of their firearms or be subject to fines and imprisonment. But, the onus is on current gun owners to know of their unlawful status when they begin consuming medical marijuana, even though current gun owners are not warned of the legal implications of their recommended medications. Consequently, the reporting requirements imposed by ATF Form 4473 and inherent in § 922(g)(3) compels individuals to disclose their unlawful status in violation of the privilege against self incrimination.

    Source, p. 19.

    The Sixth Amendment doesn’t protect you against self-incrimination, it’s part of the Fifth Amendment.

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  150. Footnotes were omitted in the quoted paragraph in post 150.

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  151. The Sixth Amendment doesn’t protect you against self-incrimination, it’s part of the Fifth Amendment.

    It’s both the Fifth and Sixth Amendments. Miranda’s companion case was Escobedo v. Illinois. That’s why you have a right to an attorney before and during questioning and if you cannot afford an attorney one will be appointed for you.

    nk (c2e4b4)

  152. > That’s why you have a right to an attorney before and during questioning and if you cannot afford an attorney one will be appointed for you.

    That’s been a target of conservative jurisprudence for half a century, want to bet on it still being a constitutional right by the end of the decade?

    aphrael (1797ab)

  153. And if Thomas had not been dreaming of Malay pirates on Harlan Crow’s yacht, he would not have asked his stupid question. No Constitutional right is like another and the Second Amendment has its own uniqueness.

    Guns are dangerous. They’re supposed to be dangerous. If they were not dangerous, nobody would want them. In the hands of unreasoning persons, they are unreasonably dangerous.

    nk (c2e4b4)

  154. That’s been a target of conservative jurisprudence for half a century, want to bet on it still being a constitutional right by the end of the decade?

    I don’t know.

    nk (c2e4b4)

  155. @149

    t’s a shame the GOP is so incompetent as to appoint a Federal Prosecutor that’s an ‘dutiful’ ally of the Biden’s and then compound that error by putting that person in charge of investigating Hunter.

    Too bad the only possible explanation for the observable fact patterns are this vague and broad reaching conspiracy you allege.

    /snark

    Time123 (316585) — 6/12/2024 @ 12:50 pm

    Are you trying to be dense?

    It’s not the GOP who selected Weiss… it was the two Democratic Senators are pushed his appointment by stated that they’re send their “blue slips”:
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Blue_slip_(U.S._Senate)#:~:text=In%20the%20Senate%2C%20a%20blue,an%20opinion%20on%20the%20nominee.

    So, please step off of this “conspiratorial” accusation.

    It’s beneath you.

    whembly (86df54)

  156. @152

    The Sixth Amendment doesn’t protect you against self-incrimination, it’s part of the Fifth Amendment.

    It’s both the Fifth and Sixth Amendments. Miranda’s companion case was Escobedo v. Illinois. That’s why you have a right to an attorney before and during questioning and if you cannot afford an attorney one will be appointed for you.

    nk (c2e4b4) — 6/12/2024 @ 1:35 pm

    Yup. This.

    @Rip: my argument is that there are colorable arguments that demanding a document to snitch on yourself, as a gatekeeping method to restrict a right could be unconstitutional.

    I think, at the maximum, background checks should *only* check if you’re a citizen AND an adult (18 yo).

    whembly (86df54)

  157. Today’s example of habituation: When a Trump fundraising letter opens with…

    *HAUL OUT THE GUILLOTINE*

    …and gets just a trickle of media attention. It hearkens to me the image of the scaffold on J6 with Pence’s name on it.

    Paul Montagu (383f45)

  158. @147

    whembly —

    National Review is paywalled, so I wont be reading the whole thing.

    I guess I am trying to understand what the beef in McCarthy’s article is truly — which I guess is a belief H. Biden was undercharged. This is what we have Congressional committee’s for — getting at the truth. But since Comer and gang very foolishly had their conclusion before they got through the facts — they blew their credibility.

    The only valuable part of Comer’s hearing was bringing whistleblowers to light regarding Hunter potentially being undercharged. However, that wasn’t terriby exciting, so we were treated to the bogus bribery accusations that were part of the Trump/Giuliani miasma of the first Trump impeachment. And now the whole thing looks like a sad joke generated to make Trump feel good about his own scumminess.

    Appalled (af1120) — 6/12/2024 @ 12:39 pm

    The fundamental beefs McCarthy describes in his post are:
    a) Weiss slow walked the investigation, to the point that statute of limitations eventually time barred the most serious of the allegations – namely the tax fraud during when Hunter was working for Burisma and took money from China (CEFC). All of which would’ve exposed Joe Biden had Weiss vigorously prosecuted those allegations.

    b) The gamesmanship Weiss & Garland conducted to cover Joe Biden as much as possible.

    whembly (86df54)

  159. @158

    Today’s example of habituation: When a Trump fundraising letter opens with…

    *HAUL OUT THE GUILLOTINE*

    …and gets just a trickle of media attention. It hearkens to me the image of the scaffold on J6 with Pence’s name on it.

    Paul Montagu (383f45) — 6/12/2024 @ 2:01 pm

    While certainly in bad taste, you do know that scaffold was just a prop… it wasn’t functional nor “people” sized.

    whembly (86df54)

  160. @153

    > That’s why you have a right to an attorney before and during questioning and if you cannot afford an attorney one will be appointed for you.

    That’s been a target of conservative jurisprudence for half a century, want to bet on it still being a constitutional right by the end of the decade?

    aphrael (1797ab) — 6/12/2024 @ 1:37 pm

    What the hell are you even talking about?

    whembly (86df54)

  161. Montagu —

    I went and looked at the link. It’s not a January 6 reference — it dates to earlier grievances (Kathy Griffin, would you believe?)

    Trump whining about being treated poorly isn’t news.

    Appalled (af1120)

  162. https://www.nbcnews.com/politics/congress/house-vote-holding-attorney-general-garland-contempt-biden-audio-rcna156327
    House holds Garland in contempt.

    …guess how likely the DOJ would prosecute Garland?

    whembly (86df54)

  163. >What the hell are you even talking about?

    Conservative legal activists have been opposed to Miranda since it was decided. It was one of the major things that conservative activists railed against in the years between Miranda and Roe, and it’s remained in disfavor in conservative legal circles.

    aphrael (1797ab)

  164. Whembly, I haven’t followed the case as much as you have (I already decided long ago that Hunter Biden was a POS and I wouldn’t be voting for him). Can you explain “The gamesmanship Weiss & Garland conducted to cover Joe Biden as much as possible.”

    What did they do? And is it well documented they did these things or are you speculating?

    Nate (cfb326)

  165. @165

    Whembly, I haven’t followed the case as much as you have (I already decided long ago that Hunter Biden was a POS and I wouldn’t be voting for him). Can you explain “The gamesmanship Weiss & Garland conducted to cover Joe Biden as much as possible.”

    What did they do? And is it well documented they did these things or are you speculating?

    Nate (cfb326) — 6/12/2024 @ 2:39 pm

    If you haven’t used up your free articles on NR yet, read this (which includes supporting citations/links):
    https://www.nationalreview.com/2024/06/the-dojs-undeserved-victory-lap-over-hunters-convictions/

    But, I’ll excerpt a portion that answers your question:

    For years, Garland had steadfastly refused to appoint a special counsel despite the patent conflict of interest plaguing any Biden Justice Department probe of the president’s son and other family members — activity in which the president himself was implicated. Even as he appointed a special counsel to investigate Trump (as to whom the Biden DOJ had no conflict), Garland parried every inquiry about why there was no special counsel for Hunter Biden. He laughably claimed that there was no need for one because Weiss was a Trump appointee and was fully authorized to conduct an aggressive, let-the-chips-fall-where-they-may probe. He counted on the general lack of awareness — in the public and, apparently, the media — that because the DOJ carried the Biden investigation as a tax case, even Weiss could not file charges without approval from the DOJ’s Tax Division, which was run by Biden political appointees at Main Justice.

    Meantime, Weiss played a double game. Publicly, he echoed Garland’s position that he (Weiss) was the ultimate decisionmaker on whether and where to file charges against the president’s son. But behind closed doors, as his subordinate Lesley Wolf repeatedly blocked agents from pursuing leads that could implicate President Biden, Weiss told investigating agents that he really wanted to pursue the case but was being thwarted by Main Justice. Specifically, Weiss claimed that he couldn’t charge Hunter, despite the damning evidence, because Biden-appointed U.S. attorneys in California and Washington (the districts where venue lay for tax charges) were impeding him. Weiss indicated to investigators that, to circumvent the reluctant Biden-appointees, he’d approached Main Justice to get authority that would enable him to file charges in their districts, but he’d been rebuffed. Simultaneously, Garland was ensuring skeptical congressional Republicans that Weiss was making all prosecutorial judgments with complete independence and that the DOJ stood ready to give him whatever he needed.

    It was all play-acting. If that weren’t clear enough on its face, consider that the gun case wasn’t moving either, even though venue for that one was in Delaware — Weiss’s own district. In the Justice Department, when there is a disagreement between U.S. attorneys about whether a case should be brought, the dispute is resolved by the attorney general (and the AG’s deputy, to whom presidentially appointed district U.S. attorneys report). The AG either orders the recalcitrant U.S. attorneys to cooperate, or orders the U.S. attorney who seeks to bring charges to stand down. U.S. attorneys cannot block other U.S. attorneys from filing charges unless the AG allows it to happen.

    Clearly, Garland and Weiss were trying to pull off a hat trick: (1) making it appear that there was a good faith investigation of Hunter Biden, while (2) refraining from bringing any actual charges against Hunter Biden, and (3) seeking an opportune time to drop the investigation on the pretext that the evidence was insufficient — even as Republican-controlled House committees gathered mounting evidence of Hunter’s lucrative influence-peddling and perusal of his laptop data kept yielding more proof of criminality.

    The circle proved impossible to square when the sweetheart plea deal blew up. That debacle brought unprecedented scrutiny to the overwhelming evidence of Hunter’s guilt. Ergo, pressure mounted on Garland to appoint a special counsel. Finally, Garland relented — in a manner of speaking. The special counsel he chose was . . . yes . . . Weiss — the very prosecutor who had spent five years sabotaging the investigation.

    This could not have been more fraudulent. The special-counsel regulations, which Garland publicly claimed to be following, require that a special counsel be brought in from outside the government, and that he or she be the embodiment of competence, rectitude, and independent judgment. To the contrary, Weiss was a Biden DOJ insider who had long conducted the investigation exactly the way one would expect a conflicted prosecutor to conduct it — by undermining it at every turn.

    But Garland covered his tracks in the fine print: In citing the special-counsel regs, his order appointing Weiss studiously omitted mention of §§600.1 through 600.3 — the provisions that both require the appointment of special counsel when the DOJ is conflicted, and mandate that the special counsel be a lawyer from outside the government. Moreover, in the appointment order, and in Weiss’s response when Hunter’s counsel later challenged Weiss’s appointment, the Biden Justice Department took pains to stress §600.10, the final special-counsel reg, which provides that no one — no defendant, no court, and no member of the public — may force the Justice Department to comply with the regulations. That is, the DOJ may ignore them with impunity . . . which is exactly what Garland has done in touting Weiss as a duly appointed “special counsel.”

    Once appointed, Weiss tried to repair his reputation while nodding to the unavoidable political reality that the president’s son could no longer be spared. He has never, however, lost sight of the highest objective: to protect the president.

    Five years after the fact — meaning nearly five years after a defendant who was not President Biden’s son would have been charged, convicted, and sentenced — Weiss finally indicted Hunter Biden in Delaware. Again, that’s Weiss’s own district, so he could have brought the case at any time, without any plausible claim that he was being obstructed by Biden-appointees. Weiss chose to delay. Because he did, Hunter now has a Second Amendment defense based on the Supreme Court’s Bruen case — decided in 2022, over three years after Hunter should have been charged. It may be an improbable claim on appeal — it certainly did Hunter no good in the trial court — but it is a claim he has solely because of Weiss’s strategic foot-dragging.

    Nevertheless, Weiss has achieved the Biden Justice Department’s main goals.

    What goals?

    First, although Hunter is charged with avoiding taxes on the huge windfalls he received by monetizing his father’s political influence, Weiss studiously avoided mentioning President Biden in the indictment, much less implicating him. What’s more, expect that Hunter’s lawyers will remind the public that Weiss already stipulated to the afore-described, hilariously entitled “statement of facts” filed with the court in connection with the failed sweetheart plea deal. Weiss thus agreed to a “factual” recitation that claims Hunter earned big fees because he was a high-end lawyer and businessman . . . not a drug-addled ne’er-do-well cashing in on his father’s political power.

    Second, because Weiss declined to charge Hunter Biden for five years despite boatloads of damning evidence, the chance that the president’s son will face real justice and accountability for his crimes is nil. Hunter will not be sentenced on the gun convictions until later this year; even if a light prison sentence is imposed, he is sure to be released on bail pending appeal — an appeal that will not be decided until sometime next year, if then.

    Meanwhile, the trial of the tax case is not scheduled until September. It is highly likely that Weiss will work out a plea deal with Hunter — one that, unlike the first one, will at least look like it has real teeth. But whether there’s a plea agreement or a trial — a trial it is hard to believe the Bidens would let happen in the weeks right before Election Day, with early voting already underway — the inevitable conviction will be timed so that Hunter’s sentencing is scheduled to occur only after the election.

    Once the election is over, win or lose, President Biden’s public commitment to refrain from pardoning his son will no longer be operative. Either before Inauguration Day 2025 (if Biden has lost the election) or before Hunter is sent to prison (if Biden wins the election), President Biden will grant his son clemency on any and all prosecutions based on conduct up to and including the date of the pardon.

    For that turn of fortune, Hunter Biden will be able to thank the very special counsel, David Weiss.

    whembly (86df54)

  166. @164

    >What the hell are you even talking about?

    Conservative legal activists have been opposed to Miranda since it was decided. It was one of the major things that conservative activists railed against in the years between Miranda and Roe, and it’s remained in disfavor in conservative legal circles.

    aphrael (1797ab) — 6/12/2024 @ 2:37 pm

    ROE, yes you are correct.

    But, I don’t believe “conservative legal circles” disfavors Miranda or any Due Process framework.

    whembly (86df54)

  167. Yeah, you’re just wrong on the history there. Maybe conservatives have made their peace with it, but Miranda was one of the key Warren court decisions that conservatives of the time decried, because it made it harder for police to do their jobs and helped criminals get away with their crimes, particularly by undermining the efficacy of police interrogations.

    aphrael (1797ab)

  168. @168 I’ll stipulate that historically, you may be right.

    But, I’m 47 and in my lifetime I don’t really recall that Miranda/Due Process/any constraints against “police to do their job” was really disfavored by “conservative legal circles”.

    As recently as 10 years ago (might even been during the Bush years), many in the “conservative legal circles” has been moving against the idea of civic forfeiture, and the likes.

    whembly (86df54)

  169. More broadly, the conservative opposition to the Warren court which launched the entire modern conservative legal movement was centered on objection to these pillars:

    * decisions like Miranda which were perceived as undermining law and order (see also the decisions which effectively gutted vagrancy laws);

    * decisions which were perceived as driving religion out of the public square;

    * decisions which were perceived as unsettling the political balance (one man / one vote and its descendants)

    the law-and-order objections were in a lot of ways the strongest, and had the broadest political appeal.

    aphrael (1797ab)

  170. I also think that Dalton Trumbo was a rotten piece of work and a paid Soviet agent of influence.

    Among other things, he wrote anti-Hitler propaganda in the 30’s, switched to pro-Hitler/isolationist stuff after Hitler and Stalin agreed to rape Poland, and then switched to pro-war again after the pact broke down.

    But wait, there’s more:

    Some things are overlooked, of course, such as Dalton’s slavish loyalty to Stalin from the late 1930s until the Caligula in the Kremlin died in 1953. Stalin may not have been perfect, Trumbo would later admit, while insisting that the serial killer in Moscow had done wonders as he “preserves, maintains and develops” socialism.

    His embrace of Adolf Hitler is also nicely airbrushed. During the 22 months of the Hitler-Stalin pact, Dalton sided with the Fuehrer as he attacked Poland, stormed across Western Europe and then blitzed London in preparation for a cross-channel invasion. Dalton mobilized his polemical skills to ease Hitler’s burden of conquest by demonizing his enemies and insisting that England was just not worthy of assistance.

    He even accused FDR of “treason” and “black treason” for aiding the British in their hour of peril. That was the party line from Moscow, which Dalton emphatically echoed. Not until the Nazis marched on Russia in 1941 did he find the German warlord a major disappointment.

    Nor do the movie makers let us in on Trumbo’s warm embrace of Kim Il-Sung’s North Korea when it attacked South Korea in June 1950 with critical Soviet support. American soldiers sustained thousands of casualties in rescuing the South from Communist conquest, but Dalton decided to write a snarky little poem trashing America’s intervention, as if we had initiated the slaughter. It goes like this:

    “Have we hurt you, little boy?/ Ah, . . . we have/ We’ve hurt you terribly/ We’ve killed you/ Hear then, little corpse . . . it had to be/ Poor consolation, yet it had to be/ The Christian ethic was at stake/ And western culture and the American way/ and so, in the midst of pure and holy strife,/ We had to take your little eastern life.”

    Channeling his inner Stalin, he also wrote a screenplay — egged on by some of his Hollywood Ten friends — in which the major character, Catherine Bonham, reveals her ardent attachment to North Korea. Bonham insists Kim’s country is a “model” Asian nation and is fighting for its freedom “just as we had to fight for our own independence in 1776.”

    The authentic Trumbo, not the Botoxed movie version, used his inexhaustible supply of energy to advance not the First Amendment but totalitarian Communism. He secretly joined the Kremlin-controlled Communist Party in 1943 but conceded to biographer Bruce Cook in the 1970s that he “might as well have been a Communist ten years earlier” and that he “never regretted it.” He loved the party so much that, after serving a prison term for contempt of Congress and a sojourn in Mexico, he “reaffiliated with the Party in 1954” and then left the party in 1956.

    https://nypost.com/2015/11/05/trumbo-is-a-whitewash-of-an-unrepentant-hollywood-commie/

    Kevin M (a9545f)

  171. @Rip: my argument is that there are colorable arguments that demanding a document to snitch on yourself, as a gatekeeping method to restrict a right could be unconstitutional.

    Great. We can get rid of tax returns then, too.

    Kevin M (a9545f)

  172. @172

    @Rip: my argument is that there are colorable arguments that demanding a document to snitch on yourself, as a gatekeeping method to restrict a right could be unconstitutional.

    Great. We can get rid of tax returns then, too.

    Kevin M (a9545f) — 6/12/2024 @ 3:29 pm

    Under what explicit Constitution/Amendment framework could be used to identify a right that filing tax returns infringes on?

    whembly (86df54)

  173. > Under what explicit Constitution/Amendment framework could be used to identify a right that filing tax returns infringes on?

    the right to not self-incriminate, i imagine.

    there are extant cases of people being prosecuted for failing to report, on their income taxes, gains from illegal enterprises.

    aphrael (1797ab)

  174. @175

    > Under what explicit Constitution/Amendment framework could be used to identify a right that filing tax returns infringes on?

    the right to not self-incriminate, i imagine.

    there are extant cases of people being prosecuted for failing to report, on their income taxes, gains from illegal enterprises.

    aphrael (1797ab) — 6/12/2024 @ 3:42 pm

    But there’s a difference… right?

    What’s the equivalent to the 2nd Amendment to a right/amendment to not pay taxes and ignore the 16th Amendment?

    whembly (86df54)

  175. Under what explicit Constitution/Amendment framework could be used to identify a right that filing tax returns infringes on?

    The Right to Privacy? The Right to be secure in my papers and effects from government intrusion?

    It’s not the tax that’s the problem it’s the ever-increasing level of detail required for the bureaucrats to determine if I’ve paid the right amount. Not only must I pay, but I must snitch on myself about all my financial dealings even if I have never been suspected of not paying the right amount and/or when audited I have shown to HAVE paid the right amount.

    I am essentially served with a warrant without probable cause. Isn’t getting the money enough for them?

    Kevin M (a9545f)

  176. What’s the equivalent to the 2nd Amendment to a right/amendment to not pay taxes and ignore the 16th Amendment?

    I am not allowed to just pay the taxes. I am also forced to report all my financial dealings, even those that have little to no bearing on my tax liability.

    And still they have the ability to — without the least pretense of probable cause — to audit my return and demand all my records (which I must store in proper order for their convenience for a number of years). The “taxpayer compliance audit” ignores the 4th Amendment.

    Kevin M (a9545f)

  177. Whembly – you’re correct that there is no argument that says you are immune to the requirement to pay taxes.

    But the fifth amendment means you can’t be required to provide evidence against yourself, right? So if you’re underpaying taxes, you can’t be required to provide the evidence that you’re doing so, and you can’t be required to provide evidence that you’re profiting from illegal activity.

    At least, that’s the argument.

    aphrael (1797ab)

  178. you can’t be required to provide the evidence that you’re doing so

    Sure you can. They just need a warrant, based upon probable cause, stating the items the be surrendered.

    Kevin M (a9545f)

  179. …guess how likely the DOJ would prosecute Garland?

    whembly (86df54) — 6/12/2024 @ 2:29 pm

    About as likely as the Clinton DOJ prosecuting Holder or the Trump DOJ prosecuting Bill Barr.

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  180. RIP ’60s French singer and fashion icon Françoise Hardy (80).

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  181. RIP French Connection actor Tony Lo Bianco (87):

    …………
    Lo Bianco was also memorable as a smooth-talking con man with a lonely nurse (Shirley Stoler) for a girlfriend/accomplice in Leonard Kastle’s documentary-style The Honeymoon Killers (1970), which Francois Truffaut once said was his favorite American film.

    In another cult classic, the horror thriller God Told Me To (1976), directed by Larry Cohen, Lo Bianco starred as a New York cop who investigates a series of bizarre murders orchestrated by the leader of a religious group (Richard Lynch).
    …………
    In the best picture winner The French Connection (1971), directed by William Friedkin, Lo Bianco was Sal Boca, a flashy guy who as the owner of a modest luncheonette seemed to have a lot of cash on hand. Of course, he was involved in an illegal narcotics operation.

    Two years later, Lo Bianco was back in another New York-set crime thriller, The Seven-Ups (1973), appearing again with French Connection co-star Roy Scheider. His character, Vito Lucia, is a crooked undertaker and underworld informant who backstabs his childhood pal, Scheider’s cop, Buddy.

    (Philip D’Antoni produced The French Connection and produced and directed The Seven-Ups, the only movie he ever helmed. Both films feature classic car chases.)
    …………
    ………..(I)n 1963, he made his onscreen debut on an episode of The Doctors and later appeared on Get Smart (as a KAOS agent) and N.Y.P.D. In the 1970s, he had a recurring role as a cop on the acclaimed NBC drama Police Story.
    ………….
    Lo Bianco’s big-screen résumé also included Bloodbrothers (1978), F.I.S.T. (1978), City Heat (1984), City of Hope (1991), Oliver Stone’s Nixon (1995), The Juror (1996) and Kill the Irishman (2011), and he directed a 1984 feature, Too Scared to Scream, that starred Mannix great Mike Connors.
    ………….

    Rip Murdock (816fe1)

  182. About as likely as the Clinton DOJ prosecuting Holder or the Trump DOJ prosecuting Bill Barr.

    About as likely as Clinton’s IRS subjecting Paula Jones to a tax audit.

    Oh, wait.

    Kevin M (a9545f)

  183. @120 I’m a leftist when did I say lap top was debunked? Corporate establishment third way clinton/biden/dnc democrats and their running dogs in corporate media said it was debunked. Get your enemies strait.

    asset (cfcdf4)

  184. About as likely as the Clinton DOJ prosecuting Holder or the Trump DOJ prosecuting Bill Barr.

    Correction: Eric Holder was Attorney General under Obama.

    Rip Murdock (816fe1)

  185. @122 Dalton Trumbo was a great american who never committed treason unlike nixon and reagan to win elections. Watch the movie Trumbo to see how a real american behaves in hollywood unlike reagan who couldn’t remember why he sold out the screen actors to the grand jury probing his corrupt leadership. He may be a crook ;but at least he is an anti-communist crook! See book Dark Victory reagan MCA and the mob. by dan moldea.

    asset (cfcdf4)

  186. Biden says he won’t pardon hunter ;but refuses to rule out commutation of sentence. (AP)

    asset (cfcdf4)

  187. @130 see the brave one its great! If you have young children they will love it! Adults too!

    asset (cfcdf4)

  188. @171 Glad to see that doesn’t happen today. The 2020 election was stolen/hunter biden’s lap top disinformation!

    asset (cfcdf4)

  189. Biden says he won’t pardon hunter ;but refuses to rule out commutation of sentence. (AP)

    asset (cfcdf4) — 6/12/2024 @ 8:00 pm

    That’s disingenuous-there isn’t a direct quote from Biden saying that; AP is only reporting that White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre “has not spoken to the president about the issue since the verdict was delivered Tuesday,” and she is quoted as saying on a commutation, “I just don’t have anything beyond that (his statement on ABC News (last week).”

    I’m sure President Biden will be asked about it at the debate. In any event, H. Biden can remain free for a long time while both his cases wind through the appeals process.

    Rip Murdock (816fe1)

  190. @186: Q.E.D. Rip

    Kevin M (a9545f)

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