Perverting the Course of Justice

I have no idea who “looseheadprop” is, but he or she writes one heck of a great essay over at Firedoglake on The Federal Prosecutor. You should read the whole thing, but in case you're lazy, here's the conclusion:

In short, [then-Attorney General and later Supreme Court Justice Robert H. Jackson saw] the Hatch [Act] as a good excuse for USAs and AUSAs to be able to fend off attempts by politicos to co-opt the awesome power of their office to achieve political ends.

For over a generation, it was these principals that were inculcated into DOJ lawyers serving in the USAOs. Young lawyers like Jim Comey cut their teeth on these ideals. And for my entire professional life, I have seen no other standard, nor ever guessed that any other standard might ever be applied.

Contrary to the gobbletygook, clapptrap, distortions and apparently outright lies being slung around these days; this is not a question of a change in style from a previous administration to the current one.

This is a wholesale departure from long established traditions and well settled fully functioning and successful policies that have served this nation well under both Republican and Democratic administrations since at least our grandparent's day.

I don't know what Jim Comey is going to say today. But I know that he was “brought up” as a lawyer in the same traditions that all federal prosecutors of my generation learned. I also know that I have long admired his integrity and courage and have long feared his wrath (not that it has ever been directed at me, but it is terrifying to witness).

As a side note, I was at the Law Day dinner at the Waldorf on May 1st. All the talk that night was on two topics: 1)The USA firing scandal/raping and pillaging of DOJ, and 2) an online petition that was circulated that day calling for the restoration of habeas corpus.

I am happy to report that lawyers, judges, and other public servants known to me to be registered republicans where amoung the most outraged with respect to the former, and amoung the ardent supporters of the latter.

This is not about political party any more. This is about the rule of law. It is also about whether we are a civilized country striving to reach our best aspirations or whether we have sunk into barbarism where might makes right and where the term “serves at the pleasure of the president” is twisted from a courtly expression used by one who would resign in protest if he could not in good conscience carry out a directive from the President which the appointee felt to be wrong, into an excuse, a coverup for nefarious meddling into the charging decisions made at the District level.

As Lord Moulton once famously observed

“The measure of a civilization is the degree of its obedience to the unenforceable.”

As opposed to the current administrations view “if is it is not a clear violation of an often used criminal statute, then it's perfect;ly OK.” And even then they have some carve out exceptions for “quaint” crimes involving violations of the Geneva conventions.

I will leave you with one last, chilling thought form the eloquent Lord Moulton

“Tyranny is yielding to the lust of the governing.”

If you are a law professor, lawyer, or law student, please consider signing the online petition to Congress requesting that it restore habeas corpus.

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2 Responses to Perverting the Course of Justice

  1. BroD says:

    Great stuff–but it should be “these principles”, not “these principals.”

    Yeah, I know, I drive my self crazy too.

  2. Michael says:

    When I quote stuff, I usually don’t clean up the typos. Even when I see them.

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