Meanwhile … In Pennsylvania

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This article appeared in the National Review Online

This story is refreshing AND perplexing. Not only because of the uncovered corruption during a lengthy investigation, but also due to the apparent ball-dropping by the Pennsylvania Attorney General(AG)  who inherited the case.  It appears the Philadelphia District Attorney is on the chase to require the AG to execute the duties she has sworn to uphold … regardless of party politics.

If you read the story you will be enthralled due to the particulars of the cases and the individual players.

Why did the AG drop a case that exposed Democratic corruption?

Philadelphia DA Seth Williams (left) has slammed Pa. AG Kathleen Kane
Text

John Fund

Prosecutors almost never go to war against each other. But in Pennsylvania, Democratic attorney general Kathleen Kane is being brutally criticized by Seth Williams, Philadelphia’s district attorney and a fellow Democrat. Williams is upset that last year one of Kane’s first acts in office was to decline to prosecute four Philadelphia state legislators and other government officials. In a sting operation, all had been caught accepting cash or Tiffany jewelry in exchange for votes or favors. Kane, who is white, has defended herself, saying that the investigation was badly managed and tainted by racism. She claims the criticism comes from what she calls the “Good Ol’ Boys Club.” Williams, who is African American, has shot back: “I have seen racism. I know what it looks like. This isn’t it.”

The sting operation followed pretty much the same playbook as the federal Abscam investigation of the 1970s. Begun in 2010, the Philly probe was conducted under Kane’s three immediate predecessors as attorney general, and it resulted in more than 400 hours of video and audio recordings. Tyron B. Ali, a lobbyist originally from Trinidad, served as the undercover agent; after he was charged with fraud, he agreed to wear a wire in exchange for lenient treatment. Word of his cash offers eventually got around and prompted some elected officials to call him first. “Sources with knowledge of the sting said the investigation made financial pitches to both Republicans and Democrats, but only Democrats accepted the payments,” the Philadelphia Inquirer reported last week.

Attorney General Kane inherited the investigation when she took office in January 2013. She told the Inquirer that she stopped it without filing any charges because it was “poorly conceived, badly managed, and tainted by racism.” She quoted Claude Thomas, the chief investigator in the case, as saying he had been ordered to target “only members of the General Assembly’s Black Caucus” and to ignore “potentially illegal acts by white members.”

In response, Williams issued an angry statement and penned an op-ed in Sunday’s Inquirer. “The notion that they would target anyone based on race is ridiculous,” Williams said in a statement. “I am confident they are not racist, and it is regrettable that the attorney general would casually throw around such an explosive accusation.” Thomas, who is also African American, now works for Williams and denies he ever made such a statement.

What is clear is just how damning some of the collected evidence is. The Inquirer reported this exchange between Ali, the lobbyist, and state representative Vanessa Brown:

Ali went to Brown’s office and handed her an envelope with $2,000, according to people who have reviewed a transcript of a tape Ali made on that day.

As Brown accepted the money, they said, she put it in her purse and said: “Yo, good looking and Ooowee. . . . Thank you twice.”

After he gave Brown the money, Ali urged her to vote against a bill that would require voters to show identification at the polls, the sources said.

Kane’s supporters say that federal law-enforcement officials she consulted believed the probe had suffered from a lack of “quality control” and could be viewed as entrapment. “Is the acceptance of cash alarming? Absolutely,” one person close to Kane told the Inquirer. “But you’ve got to think: I’ve got to try this case.”

It certainly may have been politically awkward for Kane, as a Democrat, to prosecute only African-American defendants, but a conviction on something should have been a slam dunk. Even if prosecutors couldn’t prove a quid pro quo, it is illegal for politicians to accept payments to enrich themselves and also illegal not to report the income. Further, the prosecutors in this case have a sterling track record in securing convictions against the leadership of both parties in the legislature, winning 21 convictions in the 2010 “Bonusgate” scandal, which involved illegal payments to legislative staffers who performed political work. All of those convicted were white.

Kane has declined to answer detailed questions about why she dropped the investigation. Her critics, she says, are “playing political games to discredit me in order to fulfill their own selfish and improper agenda.” When she met with Inquirer editors last Thursday, she brought her personal attorney and on his advice declined to answer any questions after the meeting. Her attorney says she may file a defamation suit against the paper, a ploy frequently used by public figures to intimidate journalists.

Williams says he is tired of Kane’s “escalating excuses.” He points out that when she took office, the files on the probe were with federal prosecutors who hadn’t yet concluded whether they wanted to pursue their own case. “All she had to do was leave the investigation in the hands of federal authorities,” Williams wrote in Sunday’s Inquirer. “But she didn’t do that. Instead, she asked for the files back. And then, after going out of the way to reclaim the investigation, she shut it down.”

One bit player in the drama, who had dealings with Ali and was shocked to learn later that Ali was a government agent, says the whole thing reminds him of a John Grisham novel. My vote is for House of Cards. And from what we know so far, it shouldn’t be too hard to start matching up some of the Philadelphia players with their dramatic counterparts in the Netflix series.

— John Fund is a national-affairs columnist for National Review Online.

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Making Congress Accountable To The Constitution

The following link is a video lecture from Hillsdale College by former Arizona Congressman John Shadegg.  The video is just over 62 minutes long.  Hopefully readers will have the time and desire to watch the video and also read the background information about Mr. Shadegg:

Making Congress Accountable To The Constitution

Hillsdale College Coat of Arms

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United States Constitution Class

First page of Constitution of the United States

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Many of you are knowledgeable about our Constitution, and that certainly is a good thing.  If you need a brush-up on the Constitution and our Declaration of Independence, you have come to the right place.  Fortunately, Hillsdale College is offering a series of webcasts which will be valuable to the experienced student or the novice.  You will have to register and you can make a donation, but there is no obligation to do so in order to take the course.  You can start here by clicking on the link just below:

The United States Constitution

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Pushing A Policeman Off A Motorcycle = Bad Medicine

The failure of an idiot and the ground soon meet.  And make sure you listen for Occupy Denver babies wrongly crying while they blame the police instead of their village dullards:

The video claims some vulgar language from the OWSers.  Click on the link just below::

 Push /Shove — Expect Rain From Above

Occupy Denver, Huh?

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FOP: “Not Heart” California Federation Of Teachers?

By Chuck Ring (GadaboutBlogalot ©2009 -2011

Quote Freely From The Article – Leave The Pseudonym Alone

The Fraternal Order of Police (FOP) through a letter to the American Federation of Teachers (AFT) has said, in effect, their hearts are broken because of a resolution passed by the California Federation of Teachers.  We predicted a rift would develop between the two organizations, and although there is no sign of a permanent down grading  of the relationship — It is delightful and satisfying to witness the chasm as it develops.

The two page letter from the FOP to the CFT can be found below and you can double-click on each page of the letter for a larger image:

Nuff sed?

Apparently Law Schools Are Not Turning Out Learned Judges

Countries with Sharia rule.

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By Chuck Ring (GadaboutBlogalot ©2009 -2011

Quote Freely From The Article – Leave The Pseudonym Alone

You may ask, “Since when did you (me) become knowledgeable on the subject?”  I would have to say, it started when I participated in my very first court observation and it has continued through the years.  I’m not saying all judges are ignorant or childish as they provide remedy through their decisions, but there is enough silly stuff going on to convince me that sense has left the senses of many judges.  We thought to have a well-developed  system of laws which will serve us fairly well in almost all adjudicatory process.  Unfortunately, that was before judges and some litigants started advocating   Sharia law to settle cases involving Muslim plaintiffs and defendants.  It looks like we are no longer a nation of laws , we are instead a nation of flaws.  Flawed judges, flawed thinking and flawed governments that by their silence or their acquiescence allow laws that are not our own to be used in the settlement of cases.  For example, in the St. Petersburg Times reporter William R. Levesque tells us what a concept stretching  judge might say.  In this case we learn that  Florida Circuit Judge Richard Nielsen has written:

State seal of Florida

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“This case,” the judge wrote, “will proceed under Ecclesiastical Islamic Law.”

Nielsen said he will decide in a lawsuit against a local mosque, the Islamic Education Center of Tampa, whether the parties in the litigation properly followed the teachings of the Koran in obtaining an arbitration decision from an Islamic scholar.

The last time we looked, Florida was still a state of these United States and as such, its litigants were subject to our very own laws and not some rabbit of a law pulled out of the white turban of Islam.  But let us look further into the dark recesses of Neilsen’s mind (assuming there is one) to see what clue is given as to his thought processes.  The suit was filed by some ousted trustees of a mosque several years ago.  The  judgment in the case could decide who might control a significant amount of money paid to the mosque after part of their land  was condemned for a road by the  State of Florida.  The opposing side through their lawyer has appealed the judge’s decision, saying that religion has no place in a secular judicial setting.

But attorney Paul Thanasides last week appealed Nielson’s decision with the 2nd District Court of Appeal, saying religion has no place in a secular court.

His client: the mosque.

“The mosque believes wholeheartedly in the Koran and its teachings,” Thanasides said Monday. “They certainly follow Islamic law in connection with their spiritual endeavors. But with respect to secular endeavors, they believe Florida law should apply in Florida courts.”

Additional arguments from many sources appear in the article and there seems to be no accepted course with at least one professor of law, agreeing with Nielsen as to whether a judge can utilize foreign law to settle a domestic case.  reason would seem to dictate the United States has well-reasoned and well-seasoned laws and no litigant is well-served when foreign laws are applied to our country when purely domestic issues are involved.

If you wish to read of Nielsen’s grand experiment with Sharia law you can click here to read more.  Also, you may find additional information in related links posted below.

New Mexico Attorney General Sponsored Classes (8/25/10)

POSTED AS A COMMUNITY SERVICE BY GADABOUT-BLOGALOT

THESE COURSES ARE OF INTEREST TO ELECTED OFFICIALS, GOVERNMENT STAFF AND CITIZENS

Please R.S.V.P if you would like to attend one or all workshops by sending a quick e-mail to prael@nmag.gov.

Or by calling Patricia Rael at 505-554-9498

PLEASE INDICATE WHICH CLASS OR CLASSES YOU WISH TO ATTEND

POSTED JUST BELOW IS THE OUTLINE FOR THE METH PRESENTATION

METH PRESENTATION OUTLINE

  • Statewide Methamphetamine Alert brief message by AG (video clip) January 13, 2009 before legislators
  • What is Meth -
  • What does it Look like -
  • What goes into cooking Meth
  • Why is it so dangerous (Video Clip)
  • Why is it so addictive
  • What is going on in the body even after just one use
  • What are the long term health affects
  • What are the psychological and physiological affects
  • How and Why it affects the teeth, face, skin
  • How does a normal brain functions
  • How does a brain under the influence of Meth function (video clip)
  • Withdrawal
  • Mother’s interview – how she lost her daughter to murder (video clip)

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Former Sheriff Flunks Lie Detector

A Medicare card, with several areas of the car...
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By Chuck Ring (GadaboutBlogalot ©2009 – 2010)

Quote Freely From The Article – Leave The Pseudonym Alone

Would that Sheriff Andy Taylor would never sink to being a shill for parts of Obama Care,  but according to Fact Check he is guilty of spreading bull butter to old folks and old folks to be.  Here’s some of what Fact Check has to say:

In a new TV spot from the Obama administration, actor Andy Griffith, famous for his 1960s portrayal of the top law enforcement official in the fictional town of Mayberry, N.C., touts benefits of the new health care law. Griffith tells his fellow senior citizens, “like always, we’ll have our guaranteed [Medicare] benefits.” But the truth is that the new law is guaranteed to result in benefit cuts for one class of Medicare beneficiaries — those in private Medicare Advantage plans.

Back when the good sheriff and his trusty Deputy Barney Fife were active in Mayberry, NC, their following was built on trust.  Now it looks as though the Health Care brain weevil has sucked all the gray matter from Sheriff Andy’s gray cranium.  Here’s the story according to the former sheriff:

The trouble with the sheriff’s spiel is that it rises, rather sinks, to the level of puffery and false prophesy for Obama Care.  Perhaps Sheriff Andy can be granted some leeway since the law seems to support him, however the support is only as good as the fine print:

There’s even a section in the new law (section 3601) that says: “Nothing in the provisions of, or amendments made by, this Act shall result in a reduction of guaranteed benefits under title XVIII of the Social Security Act” (the title that establishes the Medicare program). Section 3602 says even Medicare Advantage recipients won’t suffer any reduction of “any benefits guaranteed by law.”

But, there is a catch … isn’t this always the case?   No need to trust me when you can get access to the complete Fact Check  piece to catch the catch by clicking here.

Change without trust and truth seems in ample supply when it comes to Obama Care.

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