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“Those who lived under communism understand exactly what just happened”

“Those who lived under communism understand exactly what just happened”

Comey-Hillary verdict reflects our own “culture of cynicism and hopelessness”

FBI Director James Comey delivered the verdict on Hillary Clinton today – not guilty by reason of … of … of ….

There are a lot of details on why this was a miscarriage of justice. The best starting place is Andy McCarthy’s column at National Review, FBI Rewrites Federal Law to Let Hillary Off the Hook.

But those are mere details. Important details, critical details, details worth writing about — but not the big picture.

Noah Rothman at Commentary wrote:

No amount of cynicism could have prepared Americans for what they witnessed on Tuesday morning, and 2016 has not been short on cynicism.

Getting closer.

The best truly big picture view I saw was from Karol Markowicz, a columnist for the NY Post and an ex-Soviet who moved the the United States as a child.

In response to the Comey verdict, Markowicz tweeted out a statement as to how others who came from the USSR expected no other result:


“Guys, the ex-president’s wife was never going to get indicted.”-all my USSR-born friends”

She linked in the tweet to a post of hers on her personal website from 2013, which has this sentence in it referring to Americans who complained about their government:

“They weren’t born in a country where hundreds of years of backward government had led to this kind of cynicism that gets passed on from parents to children.”

I understood what she meant. While I wasn’t born in and didn’t grow up in the USSR, I studied there and vicariously came to know the cynicism of the system, particularly through refusenik friends.

It wasn’t just that the powerful were above the law or there was no rule of law. It was in another dimension.

I tweeted back:

“Those who lived under communism understand exactly what just happened.”

I asked our resident ex-Soviet EdgeOfTheSandbox for her quick reaction to Markowicz’s tweet:

In the waning days of the Soviet Union, the goings on of the nomenclatura were shrouded in mystery. We gossiped about the families of Politburo members, but didn’t know who they were for sure. The only thing certain was that they were above the law, or whatever pretense at law the USSR managed to stage. This produced a culture of cynicism and hopelessness and an epidemic of alcoholism.

It’s hard to explain.

I guess you had to be there to understand. But my guess is a lot of Americans are coming to understand.


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Humphrey's Executor | July 5, 2016 at 9:06 pm

She can be and should be immediately impeached by the House of Reps. The FBI has the case ready to go. If convicted of “high crimes and misdemeanors” she would be barred from holding Federal office.

    DieJustAsHappy in reply to Humphrey's Executor. | July 5, 2016 at 9:15 pm

    While I’d like to see it happen, it’s doubtful. They soft-pedaled with the first black President. Hard to believe they will do no less with the potential first female one.

      Voyager in reply to DieJustAsHappy. | July 5, 2016 at 10:01 pm

      Then under what lawful mechanism shall we be made whole?

        DieJustAsHappy in reply to Voyager. | July 5, 2016 at 10:21 pm

        I think that’s an excellent question, one I’d like to hear honest debate concerning. This nation has been tearing at itself for some time now.

        My fear is that it may as yet require for it to fall on bended knee before a sufficient number of people will put aside their vested interests for the common good.

        I’ve urged persons to regularly pray for America with the hopes that we might pray her to a better place.

        Subotai Bahadur in reply to Voyager. | July 6, 2016 at 12:13 am

        There is no lawful mechanism, as there is no rule of law. We are in the kind of territory described by Hobbes and Locke pre-social contract.

        Today, for instance, a Federal appeals court overturned the regimes Obamacare regulations concerning the minimum standards that insurance plans have to meet. The court ruled that the regulations were not authorized by the text of the law or any interpretation of them.

        And there is no chance at all that the court order will be taken seriously by anyone. The Supreme Court is controlled by the regime and will not overturn any part of the Obamacare that they violated the Constitution to force on us.

        The Republicans in Congress have dodged doing anything about Obamacare even before they got the majority in both Houses. They refuse to go back to regular budget order, specifically because if they did they would become once again a co-equal branch with leverage. So long as we use Omnibus Continuing Resolutions, the Democrats will always run things. Ryan has promised three times to go back to regular order. And twice reneged to pass OCR’s giving Democrats even more than they wanted and funding everything hated by the country. And is about to do it again just before the election, probably to guarantee a Republican loss of one or both Houses.

        There is no lawful mechanism. There is only what Hobbes called the State of Nature until a new Social Contract is created, and followed.

      TX-rifraph in reply to DieJustAsHappy. | July 6, 2016 at 4:44 am

      “They soft-pedaled with the first black President. Hard to believe they will do no less with the potential first female one.”

      True. The Democrats and GOPe who think like this have lowered their expectations and standards BECAUSE of the color of Obama’s skin and Hillary’s gender. Sickening bias.

      The GOPe soft pedals so they don’t ‘lose.’ Then they lose anyway.

      The explanation is, I think, wrong. The real explanation is the GOPe is as corrupt as the democrats, and they want their place on the gravy train at the expense of our nation. The soft pedaling is the easiest way out.

    The House can impeach. There’s no way the Senate will convict.

    Although Biden presiding over the trial might be worth a few laughs.

      Estragon in reply to malclave. | July 6, 2016 at 6:45 am

      Biden couldn’t preside unless she picks him for VP. Holding no federal office, she cannot be impeached until she holds one.

        Milhouse in reply to Estragon. | July 6, 2016 at 3:52 pm

        Are you sure about that? William Belknap was impeached after his resignation, and a majority of senators held that the impeachment was valid and should proceed to trial. But 23 senators who thought he was guilty disagreed with that decision and voted to acquit, and together with those who would have acquitted anyway they made up more than 1/3.

    Which Senate Democrats do you think would vote to convict? It has to be at least 13, assuming all Republicans vote to convict.

      Milhouse in reply to PaulM. | July 6, 2016 at 3:54 pm

      Exactly. This is the reason not to impeach her. She’d be guaranteed an acquittal, which she would flaunt as a vindication. It worked for her husband, and it would work for her too.

    Hillary is not subject to impeachment, because she holds no Federal office.

      Humphrey's Executor in reply to mariner. | July 6, 2016 at 8:13 am

      There is a precedent for impeachment proceedings against a former cabinet officer for misdeeds in office. Grant’s Sec of War was impeached and resigned. The Senate voted that it had jurisdiction to try the and acquitted him.

      And, at the present, there is a move in Britain for Parliment to impeach Tony Blair of Iraq. Out Impeachment process id based on British precedent.

      The constitution says that if convicted of a “high crime or misdemeanor” she is disqualified from holding Federal Office. So it makes sense for Congress to be able to impeach former office holders for official misconduct in office including, surely, “extreme carelessness” in handling top secret information.

    She doesn’t currently hold office. Tough to impeach her. And since the Democrats in the senate will stand in unison with her, a useless enterprise.

    That’s a really great thought; I don’t disagree with you – in theory. But do you seriously see Paul Ryan leading the charge?

    Subotai Bahadur in reply to Humphrey's Executor. | July 5, 2016 at 11:58 pm

    The Republicans who in theory control both Houses of Congress would rather die than stand up against either Obama or any other Democrat. They are part of the same Nomenklatura. Ain’t gonna happen. If someone tries to file a bill of impeachment, it will be the Republicans that kill it immediately. You know it, I know it.

DouglasJBender | July 5, 2016 at 9:14 pm

The Founding Fathers are wondering what sort of country they fathered, and where are there true descendants?

    Humphrey's Executor in reply to DouglasJBender. | July 5, 2016 at 9:51 pm

    “If ever lady wrong’d her lord so much,
    Thy mother took into her blameful bed
    Some stern untutor’d churl, and noble stock
    Was graft with crab-tree slip; whose fruit thou art ….”
    Henry VI, part 2.

    Sanddog in reply to DouglasJBender. | July 5, 2016 at 11:12 pm

    I think they’d be surprised we lasted this long. I’m surprised we survived FDR.

    All I know is this can’t continue. If the ruling class is incapable of holding themselves accountable under the law, It WILL trickle down to the rest of society and we will become a country that is ungovernable.

    LibraryGryffon in reply to DouglasJBender. | July 10, 2016 at 11:41 pm

    “I do not know whether it is to yourself or Mr. Adams I am to give my thanks for the copy of the new constitution. I beg leave through you to place them where due. It will be yet three weeks before I shall receive them from America. There are very good articles in it: and very bad. I do not know which preponderate. What we have lately read in the history of Holland, in the chapter on the Stadtholder, would have sufficed to set me against a Chief magistrate eligible for a long duration, if I had ever been disposed towards one: and what we have always read of the elections of Polish kings should have forever excluded the idea of one continuable for life. Wonderful is the effect of impudent and persevering lying. The British ministry have so long hired their gazetteers to repeat and model into every form lies about our being in anarchy, that the world has at length believed them, the English nation has believed them, the ministers themselves have come to believe them, and what is more wonderful, we have believed them ourselves. Yet where does this anarchy exist? Where did it ever exist, except in the single instance of Massachusets? And can history produce an instance of a rebellion so honourably conducted? I say nothing of it’s motives. They were founded in ignorance, not wickedness. God forbid we should ever be 20. years without such a rebellion. The people can not be all, and always, well informed. The part which is wrong will be discontented in proportion to the importance of the facts they misconceive. If they remain quiet under such misconceptions it is a lethargy, the forerunner of death to the public liberty. We have had 13. states independant 11. years. There has been one rebellion. That comes to one rebellion in a century and a half for each state. What country ever existed a century and a half without a rebellion? And what country can preserve it’s liberties if their rulers are not warned from time to time that their people preserve the spirit of resistance? Let them take arms. The remedy is to set them right as to facts, pardon and pacify them. What signify a few lives lost in a century or two? The tree of liberty must be refreshed from time to time with the blood of patriots and tyrants. It is it’s natural manure. Our Convention has been too much impressed by the insurrection of Massachusets: and in the spur of the moment they are setting up a kite to keep the hen yard in order. I hope in god this article will be rectified before the new constitution is accepted.” – Thomas Jefferson to William Stephens Smith, Paris, 13 Nov. 1787

DouglasJBender | July 5, 2016 at 9:17 pm

{Can someone please edit my previous post? For some reason, my keyboard typed “there” instead of “their”.}

Comey didn’t say Hillary isn’t guilty. He said she’s guilty, but can’t be prosecuted because . . . Clinton.

As Obama’s mentor, domestic terrorist Bill Ayers said: “guilty as sin, free as a bird!”

    Milhouse in reply to Observer. | July 6, 2016 at 3:56 pm

    Well, no. He said that nobody who did what she did would be prosecuted. That’s almost certainly incorrect, but that’s what he said.

I apologize to Edge of the Sandbox.

First I thought she was a he.

I’ve been somewhat hard on her. Given her pedigree, she didn’t deserve that.

Living under communism… Yes. Living in a liberal society with a State-established Pro-choice Church… Yes.

“Let me be clear, we’re not saying that someone who did something similar wouldn’t have charges brought against them. We’re just not bringing charges in this particular case.”

Translation: in case any of you plebes are now thinking that you can get away with mishandling hundreds of classified documents the way Hillary did, think again. We’ll be more than happy to prosecute YOU. We’re just not going to prosecute Hillary because she’s too . . . special . . . to prosecute.

[I just now noticed the “let me be clear” bit. That’s one of Obama favorite phrases. Probably just a coincidence, right?]

    InEssence in reply to Observer. | July 5, 2016 at 11:32 pm

    “Mishandling” is not strong enough. She had them copied off a secret government system and stole them. Then she reposted them on an insecure server. Why? She said that it was more convenient than using another E-mail account, yet it is more than a hundred times the work, and it is espionage in every sense of the word.

    A reasonable person would suppose that she was selling them, and the server “being hacked” was just part of the transaction.

      Subotai Bahadur in reply to InEssence. | July 6, 2016 at 12:25 am

      Every document copied is a violation of the Espionage Act. Every one moved to her server is a violation of the Espionage Act. Every document that had its security classification stripped off before transfer is a separate violation of the Espionage Act. Every one of the scores of thousands of documents that she deleted rather than turn over is a violation of other Federal laws, because once you intermix government documents on your “private” server, everything on your “private” server becomes a government document until and unless released by a declassification board.

      She was selling them, or giving them away for ideological reasons, or both.

        Fiftycaltx in reply to Subotai Bahadur. | July 6, 2016 at 11:14 am

        How do you think she “made” millions of dollars? UAE, Saudi’s, whomever were NOT paying to listen to her skreech for 20 minutes. And the BILLIONS in the Clinton Crime Family Slush Fund Foundation are not to build houses in Haiti. They are guarantees on future performance. Obama has turned this country into a socialist utopia. Hillary would turn it into a Mafia crime family.

      It’s not just Hillary, all her “little people” including career employees, all the enablers assisting her spectacularly violate secrecy, they get away with it too, because otherwise their patroness can’t get away with it cleanly.

    SDN in reply to Observer. | July 6, 2016 at 7:39 am

    Perhaps the Professor or one of the other lawyers here could comment on this tactic.

    The next step is for Judicial Watch to launch a legal action on behalf of EVERYONE indicted or convicted of mishandling classified documents demanding that the government be required to prove the “specific intent” Comey just added to the law instead of the “negligence” standard actually contained in the law and used to mislead the jury.

      assemblerhead in reply to SDN. | July 6, 2016 at 12:27 pm

      This has got to be great news for defense teams of others convicted of similar crimes. The ultimate “get-out-of-jail-free” card.

      Espionage/National Security based convictions just became a joke.

      I expect the tidal wave of appeals to begin very soon.

    Milhouse in reply to Observer. | July 6, 2016 at 4:00 pm

    “Let me be clear, we’re not saying that someone who did something similar wouldn’t have charges brought against them. We’re just not bringing charges in this particular case.”

    Whom are you quoting there? Not Comey. He said the exact opposite. So whom? Or are those quote marks fake?

legacyrepublican | July 5, 2016 at 10:20 pm

Trump should do ad ad with the funds she got from speech saying they bought her with a voice over saying “Their investment in Hillary is safe because the fix is in and the system rigged. No charges for her thousands of reckless emails on an unsecured server that endangered the country she swore to protect and defend. Does your vote even matter to her anymore? What does her word even mean to her?”

Our problems are bigger than a mealy mouth agency letting a criminal politician off the hook.

I’m not afraid of Obama, nor Hillary. I’m afraid of a majority that would elect both.

    Estragon in reply to Andy. | July 6, 2016 at 6:47 am

    Republicans have managed to nominate the only candidate she could beat.

      Barry in reply to Estragon. | July 6, 2016 at 10:18 am

      LOL, still pushing that BS.

      Jeb! could beat her. Maybe Romney, he has such a stellar record.

      Who did you support, again?

Celebrate America’s transformation to a Banana Republic!

Hang Bananas from the White House fence.

I wonder ,Comey never mentioned the other investigation ,the corruption investigation .
We know Comey was not happy that Clinton beat them on Whitewater.
Maybe Comeys not done.He pieced together a thousands orso emails only a thousand were work related.
Many have stated the personal emails were the prize if corruption is to be proved.

Nikki Stone1 | July 5, 2016 at 11:31 pm

When we say “We want our country back,” this is what we are talking about. We want to be AMERICANS, who can have faith in our laws, our government, and our moral fabric. It’s all falling apart.

Comey said there was no evidence that the server was hacked. But Wikileaks is posting the E-mails. Are we supposed to believe that Wikileaks is manufacturing those hundreds of E-mails each week?

The days of “high crimes and misdemeanors ” is gone. Once upon a time I respected the FBI out of admiration, now I “respect” them out of fear. The nation was free because the government feared the people, not the people need fear the government. In my short time in the Soviet Union I knew I could leave….of course the Bering Sea fishing fleet captain taking off with American Coast Guatdsmen on the boat as “captives” left me on the tarmac in Moscow as a transient “hostage”… I knew I was coming home. Now where is “home”.

Comey’s an ass. Always has been an ass. His career shows it. I never understood why anyone thought he was “honorable” and would do the right thing.

The fix has been in from the very beginning. They’re just laughing at us now, not even trying hard to hide it.

I stilll like to think Comey just stole this case right out from under the Obama DOJ and preserved it for the next Administration because he knew he could not trust Lynch.
Or Obama.

    Right. Where do we find a Republican, a “real” Republican, who will stand up and say the FBI not recommending prosecution is irrelevant because the FBI butchered its recommendation for partisan political benefit? In your dreams, I think. And nowhere else.

    DoJ pushing a prosecution the FBI refuses to recommend (since the FBI is a Bipartisan National Institution Beyond Reproach, mind) would be marked as tyranny.

    Lady Penguin in reply to snowshooze. | July 6, 2016 at 5:54 am

    Ford pardoned Nixon without any charges pending or otherwise. It sets precedent. Obama will do the same on his way out the door.

    The irony here is that the Republicans are too arrogantly stupid to see that they’ll be blamed for this – for doing nothing about any of this lawlessness during the entire administration.

    Obama was successful beyond anything some of us could have imagined. When you have nearly half the country (and you can steal enough of the votes to get over 50%) who have no moral compass, and law and order are meaningless to them, he had the perfect storm to work with. Quite the feat.

    And, after all, he won.

      L. P.
      This is what comes from republicans & conservatives ceding the social sphere to democrats & the left for the past 50 years. When you run the show, you make the rules.

More outcome based “justice” where the intent justifies the means.

Blind justice has come to mean look the other way.

The real problem is not Hillary and her crimes. The real problem is the Democrat Party and all the Democrats who bend over backwards thinking that this is all perfectly justified and how Hillary does not deserve to be tried. Essentially, we have a third of the population declaring how the rule of law is dead and should only be applied to independents and conservatives. How do you combat this kind of thinking held by so many? Do these people not understand that it was kind of thinking/behavior that led to Hugo Chavez, Adolf Hitler, and others like them?

    Barry in reply to Cleetus. | July 6, 2016 at 10:21 am

    “The real problem is the Democrat Party and all the Democrats…”

    You left out their enablers, the republican party of donor class whores.

FrankNatoli | July 6, 2016 at 8:43 am

Most Americans, Democrats, who will be voting for HRC on November 8th, do not agree. This is the rule of the mob, which democracy inevitably decays into.

From the Noah Rothman link:

“Finally and most damningly, Comey observed that, though the Bureau could not prove it, Clinton’s reckless handling of classified information likely exposed documents related to the security of the United States to hostile foreign actors. At the very least, he asserted that Clinton behaved in an “extremely careless” way.”

What better way for use of the Reset Button with Russia, to provide them with intel, instead of leaving info in some drop box or under a rock in the park, like in olden times, just letting them hack it for themselves?
She certainly took advantage of her position to provide “favours” to foreign despots contributions.

and now she (Hillary) is going to ride her vagina right into the White House.

How sad for America.

I’m voting for Trump.

So i guess this is a stock market tip. Can Mötley Fool put together a mutual fund of stocks set to profit from our eminent nationwide plunge into alcoholism? Perhaps some of those companies will help us out by paying dividends with vouchers for free scotch.