Saturday, June 17, 2023

What if...

The Central Powers had won the First World War?

Wednesday, June 14, 2023

Russian Orthodox Church labels pacifism as "heresy"

While the Russian Orthodox Church already supported the invasion of Ukraine, it now also opposes pacifism. The defence of that is heresy, according to them.

Pacifism is a heretic tradition and goes directly against the teachings of the Russian Orthodox Church. This is contained in documents sent in by the Church in preparation for a church court case against a priest who condemned the Russian invasion of Ukraine. Russian medium RBC had access to this documentation.

In this case, the church court is considering statements by priest John Burdin, who is banned from presiding over services. Last year, Burdin had to appear before a civil court for allegedly discriminating against the Russian army. In that case, the priest was fined.

According to the Church’s documents, Burdin’s statements “clearly denigrate the activities of the highest church authorities” of the Russian Orthodox Church, “undermine the trust of believers”, and cause “harm to church unity.”

Read the rest here.

Tuesday, June 13, 2023

Lock Him Up

For many years, but especially the past three, conservatives have warned of the dangers of a criminal justice system that is overly reluctant to put and keep dangerous people in prison. The law is the law. Violations of it should be prosecuted. We are, and must remain, the land of equal justice, not social justice dictated by the ideological fixations of angry Americans.

These same conservatives should try being consistent when it comes to the federal indictment of Donald Trump.

It is stunning to read the grand jury’s 37-count indictment, with its depictions of a former president treating the law with the contemptuous disdain of a mafia don — but with none of a don’s concern for covering his tracks. It is even more stunning to hear what some of those in the legal community who have been defenders of Trump have to say about it.

Alan Dershowitz: “It is the kind of evidence every defense lawyer dreads and every prosecutor dreams about,” the retired Harvard law professor wrote of Trump’s recorded admission of unlawfully possessing highly classified documents.

Jonathan Turley: “Some of the evidence is coming from his former counsel, and these are very damaging statements made against him,” the Fox News legal analyst said, referring to notes made by one of Trump’s lawyers, in which the former president plots to obstruct a government subpoena. “All the government has to do is stick the landing on one count, and he could have a terminal sentence.”

Bill Barr: “It’s a very detailed indictment, and it’s very, very damning,” Trump’s former attorney general told “Fox News Sunday.” As for the suggestion that Trump is the victim of a witch hunt, Barr noted that the Justice Department had “acted in a very patient way” in trying to obtain documents from Trump, only to be met with “very egregious obstruction.”

Barr added that the way in which Trump held on to and possibly shared vital national secrets — including, reportedly, the Pentagon’s planning documents for an attack on Iran — was done in a way that “anyone who really cares about national security, your stomach would churn at.”

Read the rest here.

Friday, June 09, 2023

This is it

After seven years, I finally feel confident that we are witnessing the beginning of the end of Donald Trump. Absent severe mental illness, no prosecutor would even think about bringing this kind of indictment against a former president of the United States unless they were 300% certain that they would win in court. And this had to be bottom lined by the AG. No AG, no matter their political prejudices, would ever allow the Federal prosecution of a former president, unless they were convinced the rule of law and or national security required it. This indictment is simply damning. It alleges misconduct more serious by several orders of magnitude, than anything Hillary Clinton was accused of. Conduct that back in 2016, Trump wanted prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law. 

To be clear, Donald Trump is an American citizen and entitled to his day in court. I don't have any competence as a matter of law to pronounce him guilty. But as a matter of private opinion, I think he is going down hard and will be very lucky if doesn't die in prison.

Wednesday, June 07, 2023

Trump likely facing Federal indictment

The Feds don't typically say that you are a target unless they have the charge sheet already typed up. Unlike the nickel dime case in New York, which I expect Trump to either beat, or at worst go down for a misdemeanor, the Feds have a serious and very solid case. Trump had about a dozen opportunities to diffuse this bomb, but at every turn he has behaved with manifest bad faith. If he is in fact indicted for documentgate, he is going to be in really deep trouble. The evidence is pretty close to what prosecutors sometimes call a "slam dunk." I think his only hope is that the AG will decide for political reasons not to indict him. Pretty much anyone other than a former US president would probably have already been charged.

Play stupid games, win stupid prizes.

I am totally stealing this title because, well, I can't top it. Story here

Sunday, June 04, 2023