Archive for the ‘Rule of Law’ category

What are Venezuela’s huge protests really about?

June 13, 2017

What are Venezuela’s huge protests really about? American Thinker, Javier Caceres, June 13, 2017

CARACAS — With 65 dead in the last 60 days of marching in the streets, it’s worth looking at what these protests are really about: a constitutional crisis that strikes at the heart of rule of law in Venezuela. This is more important than the food shortages, the dissident harassment, the crime and corruption or any of the other factors that also fuel the protests. Basically, freedom itself is at stake.

Venezuela’s constitution, which is the basis of its rule of law, is under fire as never before.

To take one example, Venezuela’s attorney general declared a Constitutional Court sentence unconstitutional, and thus ruptured the country’s long constitutional tradition. After that usurpation of power, the constitution was effectively rewritten on President Nicolas Maduro’s intervention, putting an end to the separation of powers that has always been integral to rule of law in Venezuela.

For that alone, Venezuelans are protesting, and Maduro finds himself rejected by 80% of Venezuelans according to polls.

But the constitutional crisis has more than one dimension. Despite the judicial meddling described above, Maduro also proposed drafting an entirely new constitution even though a simple reading of three of the articles of the present one do not let him do it unauthorized. But, Venezuela’s Constitutional Chamber of the Supreme Court confirmed he can do it on the grounds that “he is the people.”

It shows that Venezuela’s constitutional crisis has come a long way from its orgins as an apparently normal document. How did it come to this?

It happened when the late President Hugo Chávez in 1999 first asked Venezuelans if they wanted a new constitution and held a referendum about it. In that vote, the people said ‘yes’ and after it was drafted there was an Approval Referendum. Because the people said ‘yes’ again, that is how the current constitution came to be.  Then in 2007, when Chávez submitted changes to the 1999 Constitution, in another approval referendum, the people said ‘no’ to his proposal. Whatever its merits, it worked tolerably well institutionally.

There are three constitutional articles at stake in this current crisis:  Article 5 that says the power belongs to the people by their votes and it’s not transferable.   Article 348 says the president has the initiative to ask people if they want a new constitution accompanied by basic considerations such as how many people are going to be elected to the Constitutional Assembly, or the time they are going to be deliberating among other matters.  Then a third article, number 347, says the people are the ones who decide if they want a new constitution. Only after people say ‘yes’ to a Consultation Referendum, can the process continue.

The president changed all of these norms when he said he did not need to ask people if they wanted a new constitution. After the Electoral Board’s silence, the seven Magistrates of the Constitutional Chamber of the Supreme Court, the judges who interpret the constitution, sided with the president, ruling that the president represents the people so there is no need to ask.  After this decision, the attorney general asked the magistrates to clarify and explain how they interpret the constitution so as to transfer the power of the people’s voting rights to decide to draft a new constitution to the president. There is little chance the magistrates are going to respond because they are not obligated.

The two constitutional breaches described are so ridiculous that even fifth-grade elementary textbooks, which currently say that to have a new constitution there must be two referenda, one to ask the people if they want a new one and another to get their approval with the draft, will need to be rewritten.

Maduro’s route was to go directly to the Electoral Board, which is in theory an independent branch although it has significant ties to the government, asking them to go ahead with his proposal.  The board said ‘yes, Mr. President let’s do it,’ failing to use their criteria and powers to block the president’s wish because he wasn’t asking the people first, just as any fifth grader would have been taught.

Making things worse, Maduro said that after he got the changes he wanted, there would be a Consultation Referendum instead of an Approval Referendum, the difference being that the first is not binding in case people say ‘no.’

People are not dumb. They know Maduro is backed by a bought-and-paid-for military directed by Cubans and another army of seven magistrates of whom nobody knows how they got their law diplomas, their masters’ degrees, and their doctorates.

This is why at least 50% of the 80% of the people that are against Maduro have gone out at least one day during the last two months to protest in the streets and many have gone out much more. What’s at stake now is the last chance to keep Venezuelans’ freedom and not be another Cuba or communist-style country. Venezuela’s protestors don’t want a country whose contitutions can be manipulated and changed at will, and where the only solid reality is that the country’s rulers are chosen by Cubanized party elite inside the government. That is a privilege that belongs to the people alone, and by their marching, the Venezuelans are showing that they know it.

Javier Caceres is the editor of notiven.com, a leading opposition Internet site located in Caracas, Venezuela.

Trump’s Immigration Guidance: The Rule of Law Returns

February 22, 2017

Trump’s Immigration Guidance: The Rule of Law Returns, PJ Media, Andrew C. McCarthy, February 22, 2017

homelandsecheadHomeland Security Secretary John Kelly, right, watches during President Donald Trump’s meeting on cyber security in the Roosevelt Room of the White House in Washington, Tuesday, Jan. 31, 2017. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)

On Tuesday, John Kelly, President Trump’s secretary of Homeland Security, published a six-page, single-spaced memorandum detailing new guidance on immigration enforcement. Thereupon, I spent about 1,500 words summarizing the guidance in a column at National Review. Brevity being the soul of wit, both the memo and my description of it could have been reduced to a single, easy-to-remember sentence:

Henceforth, the United States shall be governed by the laws of the United States.

That it was necessary for Secretary Kelly to say more than this — and, sadly, that such alarm has greeted a memo that merely announces the return of the rule of law in immigration enforcement — owes to the Obama administration abuses of three legal doctrines: prosecutorial discretion, preemption, and separation of powers (specifically, the executive usurpation of legislative power).

To the extent President Obama declined to enforce immigration law (notwithstanding his constitutional obligation to execute the laws faithfully), he did so under the guise of prosecutorial discretion. In the pre-Obama days, prosecutorial discretion was an unremarkable, uncontroversial resource-allocation doctrine. It simply meant that since resources are finite, and since it would be neither possible nor desirable to prosecute every crime, we target law-enforcement resources to get the most crime-fighting bang for the taxpayer buck. That means prioritizing enforcement action against (a) the worst offenders and (b) the unlawful causes of the activity.

This is easily illustrated by federal drug enforcement. There are comparatively few federal narcotics agents, compared, say, to police in a major city. But while both feds and cops have authority to arrest traffickers and consumers of illegal drugs, only federal jurisdiction is interstate and international. Consequently, the best use of finite federal enforcement resources is to limit them to prosecutions of significant felony importation and distribution offenses, leaving it to the states and municipalities to handle street pushers and misdemeanor violations involving the use of drugs.

Significantly, the fact that federal enforcement policy, which is made by the executive branch, does not target lesser felons or users does not mean this policy effectively repeals federal drug laws, which are written by Congress.

The non-targeted crimes are still crimes, and the feds reserve the right to prosecute them in appropriate cases (e.g., if they encounter these offenses in the course of carrying out other criminal enforcement missions).

In the area of immigration enforcement, Obama contorted this resource allocation doctrine into a de facto immunity scheme. That is, the Obama Homeland Security Department announced what it labeled enforcement “priorities.” If an illegal alien did not fit into the priorities, it was as if the alien were insulated against prosecution — effectively, it was as if there was nothing illegal about being an alien unlawfully present in the United States; it was as if Obama’s policies were a legal defense against Congress’s duly enacted laws.

This was complemented by a second legal distortion: Obama’s mangling of the so-called preemption doctrine. As we’ve noted, there are certain areas of law — like immigration and narcotics enforcement — in which the federal and state governments have concurrent jurisdiction: both are permitted to regulate and prosecute. This can work well (it generally does in drug enforcement); but it can be counterproductive if the dual sovereigns work at cross-purposes.

In some areas, like immigration, the courts have ruled that the federal government is supreme (on the dubious but now well-rooted theory that immigration law enforcement is primarily a federal responsibility). This means that the federal government has the power to preempt state action. Importantly, preemption is a power of Congress. That is, in an area of federal supremacy, states are prohibited to act in a manner that would contravene federal law.

Obama, to the contrary, took the position that states were forbidden to take action that contravened Obama immigration policy.

This was brought into sharp relief by the administration’s conflict with the state of Arizona. Far from seeking to countermand federal law, Arizona sought to enforce Congress’s statutes. Yet, Obama took the position that the state was bound not by Congress’s statutes but by Obama’s proclaimed enforcement policies — even if those amounted to non-enforcement of Congress’s statutes.

This was a perversion of both preemption and prosecutorial discretion. As long as Arizona was taking action consistent with federal law, its enforcement measures could not be preempted. Moreover, even if Arizona’s enforcement policy was broader than Obama’s, that should not have mattered: as we’ve seen, a federal exercise of prosecutorial discretion just means lesser crimes are not targeted, not that they are no longer crimes. If Arizona took action against those lesser crimes, that was completely appropriate; it was filling a gap in federal enforcement, not defying federal law.

The obstacles imposed by Obama’s immigration proclamations bring us to the third legal abuse: the usurpation of legislative authority. In effect, Obama’s announced priorities became not guidelines for immigration enforcement but new federal laws. According to the administration, only those aliens who fit Obama’s guidelines could be prosecuted. The Homeland Security Department was instructed to halt enforcement action at the earliest possible stage — i.e., once it was understood that an illegal alien did not fit a priority category, all investigative activity was to stop, even though it was known that the alien was acting illegally.

In effect, the Obama priorities operated like law. They controlled what federal investigators and prosecutors could do, and they were used to block states from enforcing their own laws. In this, at least for as long as Obama was president, they supplanted Congress’s laws — a clear violation of separation of powers.

All the Trump guidance announced in Secretary Kelly’s memo really does is repeal Obama’s decrees. The memo essentially says: the law of the United States is back to being the law of the United States. That’s the way it’s supposed to be.

Trump should propose real debates

October 4, 2016

Trump should propose real debates, Dan Miller’s Blog, October 4, 2016

(The views expressed in this article are mine and do not necessarily reflect those of Warsclerotic or its other editors. — DM)

The first presidential “debate” was a farce. The next presidential “debates” will likely be as well. Rather than submit to biased mainstream media moderators (but I repeat myself), Trump should propose real debates, in addition to or as substitutes for those currently scheduled. The article is also a bit of a rant about Ms. Clinton.

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In a real debate, one resolution is proposed. The candidate in favor of the proposition speaks first and gets a specified amount of time to say why it’s a good idea. Then the candidate against the proposition gets a specified amount of time for rebuttal and the other candidate a specified amount of time to respond. A timekeeper would alert the candidates when time is almost up and then up. There would be no moderator to help one debater and to trash the other; the debaters would be on their own. Both would know the issue in advance and could prepare to address it however they please and with or without prepared notes. Were our presidential debates so conducted, viewers might well learn about the candidates’ positions on the issues by how the candidates address them, rather than via the moderator.

Here are a few possible debate propositions, for illustrative purposes only:

Latin American Immigration

In a recent article, in Spanish, Hillary wrote

that no other region in the world is “more important” for the prosperity and security of the United States than Latin America.

“There is power in our proximity, which means we are not only close geographically but also in our values, interests and in our common cultural heritage,” Clinton said, adding that the “interdependence” of the economies of the two regions, as well as the ties between communities and families, is a tremendous advantage.

“We shouldn’t build a wall between us because of that truth, but rather accept it,” she said, a clear reference to her rival, Republican candidate Donald Trump, who has promised more than once to build a wall along the U.S. border with Mexico if elected to the White House.

Ms. Clinton has disagreed with Trump’s assertion that “No one has the right to immigrate to this country.”

092216-hillary-retweet

A real debate grounded on the following resolution would deal with the matter raised by Ms. Clinton. Hillary could take the affirmative and Trump the negative:

Resolved: no other region in the world is more important for the prosperity and security of the United States than Latin America.

There is power in our proximity, which means we are not only close geographically but also in our values, interests and in our common cultural heritage. The interdependence of the economies of the two regions, as well as the ties between communities and families, is a tremendous advantage.

We shouldn’t build a wall between us because of that truth, but rather accept it. The wall along our southern border would keep our the good immigrants we need and there is a right to immigrate to America.

Trump would probably point out that his wall would prevent not even one legal immigrant from coming to the United States. He might also suggest that were our immigration laws and procedures more rational (like those of Mexico?) and reflected American interests as well as those of the immigrants, it would be much easier for the immigrants we want to come, legally: those who haven’t committed significant law violations, can soon become self-supporting instead of relying on welfare, do not have serious contagious diseases and appear likely to accept American values rather than, for example, joining gangs and/or importing drugs. Trump could easily provide legal support for the proposition that there is, in fact, no legal right to immigrate to America.

Islam, the religion of peace, tolerance and women’s rights

There has been substantial discussion in the few media outlets providing an “honest discussion” of Islam about the extent to which Hillary and her colleague Huma Abedin have similar views on Sharia law. Under a Clinton presidency, Huma would likely have a high place at the White House, if not as Secretary of State.

Even if Huma were to state that she disagrees with her father, mother and other close relatives about Islam and Sharia law, would she tell the truth or engage in Al-taqiyya (lying to non-Muslims to advance Islamist doctrine)?

Huma

worked on an Islamist journal for 12 years, beginning the year she became a White House intern. She hasn’t commented on that job.

. . . .

In 2012, Rep. Michele Bachmann and four other members of Congress requested information about the influence of Muslim Brotherhood-tied groups and individuals in the U.S. government, including Abedin, who worked for 12 years as an assistant editor of an Islamist journal that spewed extremism.

Abedin’s tenure at the Journal of Muslim Minority Affairs began in 1996, the year she began working as an intern at the White house.

While it is certainly possible to disavow the ideology of one’s parents, Abedin has remained silent on their extremism as well as her work with on journal. It remains to be seen whether or not she will repudiate these new findings.

. . . .

Syed Abedin, Huma Abedin’s father who died in 1993, was a Muslim scholar connected to the Saudi Arabian government. According to exclusive video footage from 1971 recently obtained by the Washington Free Beacon, Syed Abedin advocated the following:

As Muslim countries evolve, he said, “The state has to take over. The state is stepping in in many countries … where the state is now overseeing that human relationships are carried on on the basis of Islam. The state also under Islam has a right to interfere in some of these rights given to the individual by the sharia.”

In addition, he is quoted as saying, “The main dynamics of life in the Islamic world are still supplied by Islam. Any institution, as I said before, any concept, any idea, in order to be accepted and become a viable thing in the Islamic world has to come through … Islam.”

Abedin’s mother, Saleha, has an especially strong Islamist ties. She is a member of the female counterpart of the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt and the Muslim World League. She leads a group called the International Islamic Committee for Women and Child, a subsidiary of a Muslim Brotherhood-led group that is banned in Israel for its links to Hamas.

In 1999 and three years after Huma began working for the journal, the journal and Saleha Abedin’s group published a book in Arabic titled “Women in Islam: A Discourse in Rights and Obligations.”

The book states that man-made law is inherently oppressive towards women, while sharia law is liberating. According to the text, Muslim women have an obligation to contribute to jihad, apostates are to be put to death, adulterers should be stoned or lashed, freedom of speech should be conformed to the boundaries set by sharia and wives must have sex with their husbands on command, “even if she is not in the mood.“

In addition, the organization led by Huma Abedin’s mother “advocates for the repeal of Mubarak-era prohibitions on female genital mutilation, child marriage and marital rape, on the grounds that such prohibitions run counter to Islamic law, which allows for their practice,” according to an analysis by the Center for Security policy.

The book advocates against laws to assure equality of women, saying, “Man-made laws have in fact enslaved women, submitting them to the cupidity and caprice of human beings. Islam is the only solution and the only escape.”

In terms of women working in high positions, the book states, “Her job would involve long hours of free mixing and social interaction with the opposite sex, which is forbidden in Islam. Moreover, women’s biological constitution is different from that of men. Women are fragile, emotional and sometimes unable to handle difficult and strenuous situations. Men are less emotional and show more perseverance.”

As noted in an article titled PIGGY-Headed,

Honor killings of their own maimed and maltreated women.  Forced conversions and kidnappings and abductions of whole school-loads of girls and women.  Selling these captives on the open market as slaves for the slugs who then abuse the women and girls unto death.  Not to mention torture as a rule, not exception, for captured women.  Nor, of course, the overall banning of women from driving, traveling alone, working outside the home, or suing for their own lives, domestic arrangements, or unheard-of gay right to not have a male husband/overlord.

For all these, the “Ms. Piggy”- quoting smartest woman in the world has done and said…nothing.

What do Muslims worldwide believe?

How about,

Resolved: America is not merely a Judeo-Christian nation and Islam is no less peaceful and tolerant than Christiany and Judaism. To become more diverse, we need more Muslim refugees and should strive to accommodate them by making our laws less offensive.

Hillary could take the affirmative and Trump the negative.

Conclusions

Trump should offer Ms. Clinton an opportunity to provide additional resolutions for debate which he might support.

Were Trump to propose supplemental or replacement debates along these lines, Hillary would very likely reject his offer because she needs support from the moderators and would understand the dangers a real debate would present. If Ms. Clinton declines Trump’s offer, he should feel free to decide whether to participate in the partisan “debate” farce as currently established.

Why Trump Will Win in November

July 7, 2016

Why Trump Will Win in November, Front Page Magazine, David Horowitz, July 7, 2016

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Reprinted from Breitbart.com.

In elections generally – but this one in particular – things are not always what they seem. Take the apparent exculpation of Hillary by FBI director James Comey. The Democrats responded with a statement that the issue had now been “resolved” because the target had not been indicted. But not so fast. The failure to indict was not an exoneration, and what the public witnessed – the secret meeting between the head of Justice and the target’s husband, the job offer to her would-be prosecutor, and the FBI’s  dossier of her misdeeds – was in effect a second trial, and it came with a conviction. The former Secretary of State had lied to Congress and the public, and not about private matters like sexual escapades with interns. She had lied about national security matters, and was reckless in handling secrets that affect the safety of all Americans. Worse, the fact she appeared to be getting away with a serious crime was a dramatic confirmation of Trump’s campaign narrative: the system is corrupt, the fix is in, I will change all this.

The Comey episode also turned a lot of Republican heads – most notably Paul Ryan’s – that had been openly skeptical of Trump’s candidacy, and lukewarm in endorsing his campaign. Until that moment, the failure of some Republicans to rally behind the Republican nominee, indeed to refrain from seconding Democrat attacks, has been the chief weakness of Trump’s candidacy. When Trump objected to an obviously biased judge – a member of “La Raza” and opponent of securing the border – Ryan and other Republicans joined the Democrats in the ludicrous charge that Trump was a racist. (What Republican candidate in the last thirty years have the Democrats not slandered as racist?) But Ryan is not attacking Trump now. Instead he is calling on officials to remove Hillary’s security clearance – a strong signal to voters that she is not fit to be commander-in-chief, and a powerful reinforcement of Trump’s campaign theme.

At the moment, Trump is in a virtual dead heat with Hillary, which is remarkable considering the slanderous attacks on his character not only by Democrats but by the chorus of #NeverTrump Republicans who have also called him a sexist and xenophobe, and have compared him to Mussolini and Hitler. These negatives have hurt him but will ultimately fail for the same reason that the anti-Trump attacks in the primary failed. Trump is not an unknown quantity. He has been in front of the American public for thirty or forty years. Nothing in the public record would validate the charge Trump is a racist, let alone Hitler. Consequently these negatives are unlikely to over-ride the actual issues when voters make the judgments that will determine the election. At the same time, the obviousness of the slanders merely serves to confirm Trump’s narrative that corrupt elites fear him and will do anything to prevent him from upsetting their applecarts.

The reason Trump will win in November is that national security is at the top of voter concerns and Trump has been a strong advocate on this front. Beginning with his promise to build a wall, made national security issues – vetting Syrian Muslim refugees, rebuilding the military, “bombing the sh-t” out of ISIS and naming the enemy – have been centerpieces of his campaign. Of course he has also had help from the terrorists who carried out the attacks in Paris and San Bernardino and Orlando, and from a feckless Obama who refuses to recognize the Islamist threat. But so did Mitt Romney, who had Benghazi and Fort Hood and the same feckless commander-in-chief to work with. Romney, however, chose not to do so. He took the war issue off the table when he embraced Obama’s foreign policy in the third presidential debate and never tried to make it central again.

Since World War II no Republican has won the popular vote in a presidential election where national security has not been a primary issue. The one seeming exception is Bush’s victory in 2000. But Bush did not win the popular vote even though he was able to get the necessary majority in the electoral college.  In this election, Trump has instinctively seized the high ground on national security. He has put the disasters of Obama’s Middle East retreats front and center, and challenged the crippling denial of the commander-in-chief and his failure to take appropriate measures to defeat our enemies at home and abroad.

Thanks to nearly eight years of a party in power that refuses to secure our borders and is more interested in disarming law-abiding Americans than confronting the terror threat in our midst, national security is now a primary issue on the minds of all Americans. Donald Trump speaks to those concerns in a way that the damaged and compromised Hillary cannot. Her fingerprints are all over the disastrous Obama policies in the Middle East. National security is an issue that crosses party lines and also gender lines. Even more important, it is an issue that unifies the Republican coalition, whose current disunity is Trump’s greatest weakness. With the fallout from Hillary’s server fail as a backdrop, Trump should be able to bring his party together at the upcoming convention, and go on to secure a victory in November.

The Day the Rule of Law Died

July 5, 2016

The Day the Rule of Law Died, PJ MediaMichael Walsh, July 5, 2016

Laughing Hillary

And so once again the leading crime family in America skates, thumbing its nose at the rule of law as an earnest but politically clueless FBI director stands before the nation to repeat the well-worn Clinton mantra of “insufficient evidence,” and to attribute to Hillary another shopworn cliche that the Clintons habitually use in their defense: sloppiness.

In other words, it was a judgment call by James Comey. After laying out clear proof that Mrs. Clinton violated both the letter and the spirit of the law, he essentially punted by saying this is not the kind of case a reasonable prosecutor would make. Of course it isn’t — not if that prosecutor wants to both keep his job and stay above ground. As a moral failure, Comey even surpassed the supine John Roberts who twice turned down an opportunity to put a stake through Obamacare’s black heart and thereby inflicting it upon the American people with the patina of “settled law.”

“Although there is evidence of potential violations of the statutes regarding the handling of classified information, our judgment is that no reasonable prosecutor would bring such a case,” Comey announced at FBI headquarters in Washington. “Prosecutors necessarily weigh a number of factors before deciding whether to bring charges. No charges are appropriate in this case. In looking back at our investigations into the mishandling or removal of classified information, we cannot find a case that would support bringing criminal charges on these facts.”

But Comey had a bigger task: to prevent the nomination of a woman manifestly unsuited to the highest office in the land; a woman of no accomplishment except her sham marriage to a former president (himself impeached, disgraced and disbarred); a woman of Saul Alinsky levels of malevolence toward the nation as founded; and a woman whose candidacy would shame a banana republic in its sheer effrontery.

What Comey essentially said was that he could find no clear intent on the part of Mrs. Clinton — no intent to hide evidence, no intent to expose national secrets to enemy eyes. The 110 emails that contained classified information and blithely sent roaring along the intertubes by a “careless” Hillary Clinton are of no moment. For who could ever doubt that she, her husband, and fellow Chicagoan Barack Obama have nothing but the best interests of the nation at heart?

Never mind that the woman was Secretary of State, for God’s sake, not some pencil-pushing bureaucrat toiling away in the bowels of Foggy Bottom. Secretary of State is the most distinguished cabinet position in the government, a honor generally bestowed by responsible presidents on their most trusted and able advisors. But, as it turns out, for Mrs. Clinton it was simply a resume-enhancer and if she had to let four Americans die at Benghazi at her boss’s behest in order to get her ticket punched, well, politics ain’t beanbag.

Hence the setup campaign we all just witnessed. The “accidental” meeting on a Phoenix tarmac last week between Loretta Lynch and Bill Clinton — an outrageous moral violation of the legal system. Lynch’s bold words that she would “accept” the FBI’s recommendations. The FBI’s sudden “invitation” on Saturday to Mrs. Clinton to “voluntarily” submit to examination. Hillary and Obama, all smiles, out campaigning together this very day.  The events of the past week would give any rational person sufficient grounds to believe that the fix was in, and has been all along.

At National Review Online, Andrew McCarthy writes:

It is a common tactic of defense lawyers in criminal trials to set up a straw-man for the jury: a crime the defendant has not committed. The idea is that by knocking down a crime the prosecution does not allege and cannot prove, the defense may confuse the jury into believing the defendant is not guilty of the crime charged. Judges generally do not allow such sleight-of-hand because innocence on an uncharged crime is irrelevant to the consideration of the crimes that actually have been charged.It seems to me that this is what the FBI has done today. It has told the public that because Mrs. Clinton did not have intent to harm the United States we should not prosecute her on a felony that does not require proof of intent to harm the United States. Meanwhile, although there may have been profound harm to national security caused by her grossly negligent mishandling of classified information, we’ve decided she shouldn’t be prosecuted for grossly negligent mishandling of classified information. I think highly of Jim Comey personally and professionally, but this makes no sense to me.

James Comey was the last man standing between Hillary Clinton and the complete corruption of the American government, and he failed his country. Eliot Ness, he wasn’t:

Those who know the FBI know that it’s still basically a band of Catholic schoolboys, dutifully filling in their investigator’s notebooks in order to produce beautifully typed book reports to be turned in to Sister Mary Margaret or get their palms whacked with a ruler. They may get the facts, but the bigger picture fairly consistently eludes them; but then again, the bigger picture is not their job. Comey bleated that “this investigation was done honestly, competently and independently, no outside influence of any kind was brought to bear” — but so what? Is this how the Republic falls, one dotted-i and crossed-t at a time?

But in times such as ours, more was needed than dutiful punctiliousness. Starting around the turn of the last century, the criminal urban gangs realized they could control — and steal — enormous sums of money and wield political power by taking over City Hall. Indeed, Tammany Hall was dedicated to doing precisely that — tit for tat, pay to play — and the young Bill Clinton got a priceless education in municipal corruption in Hot Springs (known at the time as “Tammany South”) It’s little wonder he brought that corrupting ethos with him to Little Rock and Washington.

Once a city was conquered, they could move on to the state level. During the 1930s, before Franklin Roosevelt turned Thomas Dewey loose on the gangs, gangland effectively owned New Jersey, Illinois, Arkansas and Nevada. From there, it was but a short hop toward national politics, leveraging the Electoral College via their control of the major population centers in vote-rich states. As a result, the Democrats now have a chokehold on the White House, as the election and re-election of a complete nonentity named Barack Hussein Obama has proven.

In failing to find sufficient evidence of a crime big enough to derail Hillary’s candidacy, Comey missed the chance to take down the far larger racket that’s strangling America. Dewey succeeded because he was ruthless, euchring Lepke into an electric chair bounce by convincing him to surrender to J. Edgar Hoover personally on federal narcotics charges. But Hoover double-crossed the murderer and turned him over to New York State, which fried him in Old Sparky on a murder beef.

I’ll leave it to others to sort out the electoral ramifications of today’s news, but in the end it’s not going to make a whit of difference. Hillary now cruises to her nomination, taps into the Obama network, and flounces around the country shouting to her true believers that this was just another trumped-up indignity at the hands of the Rethuglican attack machine. She will say — a lie, but she will say it — that she’s now been cleared by the FBI. Who cares that Comey essentially said this woman should never be allowed near a security clearance again; after all, if and when she’s president, she won’t need one.

It doesn’t matter how hard the FBI worked, or how diligent their work was. It doesn’t matter that they sleuthed or sussed out hidden, fragmentary, lost or concealed Clinton emails. It doesn’t matter how they arrived at their conclusion to do nothing.  All that matters is that they did nothing.