Let every American, every lover of liberty, every well wisher to his posterity, swear by the blood of the Revolution, never to violate in the least particular, the laws of the country; and never to tolerate their violation by others.

As the patriots of seventy-six did to the support of the Declaration of Independence, so to the support of the Constitution and Laws, let every American pledge his life, his property, and his sacred honor; let every man remember that to violate the law, is to trample on the blood of his father, and to tear the charter of his own, and his children's liberty.

Let reverence for the laws, be breathed by every American mother, to the lisping babe, that prattles on her lap; let it be taught in schools, in seminaries, and in colleges; let it be written in Primers, spelling books, and in Almanacs; let it be preached from the pulpit, proclaimed in legislative halls, and enforced in courts of justice. And, in short, let it become the political religion of the nation; and Let the old and the young, the rich and the poor, the grave and the gay, of all sexes and tongues, and colors and conditions, sacrifice unceasingly upon its altars.

While ever a state of feeling, such as this, shall universally, or even, very generally prevail throughout the nation, vain will be every effort, and fruitless every attempt, to subvert our national freedom.

- Abraham Lincoln, January 27, 1838
  Address Before the Young Men's Lyceum of Springfield, Illinois

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Welcome to the Banana Republic

“There’s something awfully fishy about this whole prosecution. It just doesn’t smell right. It smells like politics.”

Just when I think it can't get any worse... it does! Or it did.

I just read about the latest (for me anyway) scandal in Birmingham. Not sure how I missed this one, but then -- who can keep track these days?

Karl, Karl... is there no end to your devious destructiveness? And now it appears you will be investigated by your fellow banana, Alberto Gonzales. I can see justice will be served once again under this administration.

Has there ever been a collection of sociopaths quite like these?

Here is the story:

The Rovie and his GOP hit squad wanted to take back the governorship of Alabama. Unfortunately there was a Democratic governor in the way.

No problem! Rovie and his pack did what they usually do -- they perverted the law, and accused Governor Don Siegelman of corruption; then set a Bushie prosecutor on the task of putting him away for 30 years!

Siegelman's alleged crime? Steering donors to pay down the debts of an organization that lobbied for a state lottery. You know - the kind of stuff Rovie does every day, with Jack (Abramoff.)

The case quickly got ugly, and the stink is now wafting North - perhaps as far North as Washington.

Maybe... just maybe this is the real reason Karl left the Presidential Palace willingly and without handcuffs. That, or the fact that Abramoff is preparing to sing.

Perhaps Rovie will be wearing those metal cuffs sooner than we had hoped.

As per Harpers:

At the center is an affidavit which exposes a Republican political cabal aimed at using the machinery of prosecution to bring down the Democratic governor as the first step in an effort to retake the Statehouse in Montgomery for the GOP.

Now they have an affidavit from a lawyer who says she heard a top Republican operative in Alabama boast in 2002 that the United States attorneys in Alabama would “take care” of Mr. Siegelman. The operative, William Canary, is married to the United States attorney in Montgomery, Leura G. Canary. Mr. Canary, who heads the Business Council of Alabama, was an informal adviser to Bob Riley, a Republican, who defeated Mr. Siegelman in 2002. Earlier, Mr. Canary worked in the White House under President Bush’s father and has close ties to Karl Rove, Mr. Bush’s top political strategist.

In the affidavit, the lawyer, Jill Simpson, said Mr. Canary’s remark was made in a conference call with her and Rob Riley, Governor Riley’s son and campaign manager. Ms. Simpson said Mr. Canary assured the younger Mr. Riley that “his girls would take care of” Mr. Siegelman before he had a chance to run for the governor’s seat in 2006 and identified “his girls” as Leura Canary and Alice Martin, the United States attorney in Birmingham.

Neither Ms. Martin nor her office have offered much by way of retort to these explosive accusations, and, of course, they stack up perfectly against a pattern which has now been demonstrated all across the country – the prosecution by Steven Biskupic in Milwaukee of a key Wisconsin civil servant, which also had the subtext of attempting to bring down a Democratic governor, for instance. That case also produced a conviction, but was unanimously reversed by the Seventh Circuit, with its prominent Reaganite chief judge calling the whole case “preposterous.” And as the facts of the case were spelled out, any reader wonders not just how a jury could convict, but how and why a prosecutor would bring such a charge.

Ms. Martin’s handling of the case was a cakewalk no doubt, because in these days just about anyone is prepared to accept the suggestion that a politician is corrupt. Indeed, it’s the conventional wisdom. The presumption of innocence is a quaint notion which has never, practically speaking, had much effect in our courts. To the contrary, it is quite overwhelmed by confidence in the impartiality and integrity of the federal prosecutor. Or at least it was.

Ah, life in the Banana Republic: never a dull moment. Although occasionally even a Bushie will slip on a peel.

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