Thursday, May 23, 2019

Judge Napolitano Continues With His "Trump Obstructed" Screed

Judge Andrew Napolitano 
In his latest essay, Judge Andrew Napolitano is calling Justin Amash courageous for calling for the impeachment of President Trump.

Most of the points the Judge makes are just coprolite.

He writes:
Mueller found 127 communications between Trump campaign officials and Russian agents between June 2015 and November 2016 — Trump publicly said there were none — and as a result of those communications, the campaign came to expect to receive “dirt” on Trump’s principal opponent, Hillary Clinton, from the Russians.
First, the Judge mentions no names so it is difficult to know who these exchanges were between. Second, can we really assume that Trump would know about such exchanges?

Third, what difference does it make? If there was dirt on Hillary, why wouldn't the Trump campaign be interested in it and what is wrong with that? It seems almost all government anti-Trump officials were interested in the likely phoney Russian pee tape dossier.

Then Napolitano writes this, which really hurts his credibility:
Mueller indicted Russians for interference...
It should be noted that Mueller made this announcement just before Trump met with Russian President Putin. That was not aimed at helping relations between Trump and Putin.

Second, Mueller was aware that he could make these charges while never having to prove them in court because the Russians charged would never come to the US to face trial.

Third, all indications are that the Russians charged were part of a social media click farm to write outrageous posts to garner hits. The posts were not all pro-Trump.

Napolitano says none of this, just that Mueller indicted Russians as if that carried significant weight.

Finally, Napolitano writes:
The more serious and clearly criminal of these obstruction events consists in Trump instructing those who worked for him in the White House to put documents containing material falsehoods into government files that were about to be subpoenaed, and instructing the same folks to lie to FBI agents. 
But, I have not heard this charge before. It appears to be nothing but a lame neocon talking point.
The New York Times doesn't mention it in its The Mueller Report Is 448 Pages Long. You Need to Know These 7 Key Things. The Council on Foreign Relations doesn't mention it in its extensive summary written by the establishment esteemed Stephen Kotkin, Founding Co-Director of Princeton University’s Program in History and the Practice of Diplomacy and a Senior Fellow at the Hoover Institution.

As Dan Bongino states with regard to Justin Amash, it is pretty outrageous to go after Trump on essentially a nothing burger charge when massive parts of the deep state were using all their resources to go after Trump.

The point I have made before is that all presidents are scoundrels. The most a libertarian can do is use them as tools. From this perspective, there is nothing to gain from seeing Trump impeached. It will just provide a sense to the masses that the Russians somehow did interfere in a significant way in the election, which they did not. This sense would not be good for relations with Russia, which should be open and based on free trade.

On the other hand, exposing the outrageous parts of the Deep State that were actively operating against Trump makes the masses aware of the dirty nature of the Deep State, this is where the focus should be.

I am not sure what the Judge is up to but exposing the Deep State does not appear to be on his agenda.

Robert Wenzel is Editor & Publisher of EconomicPolicyJournal.com and Target Liberty. He also writes EPJ Daily Alert and is author of The Fed Flunks: My Speech at the New York Federal Reserve Bank and most recently Foundations of Private Property Society Theory: Anarchism for the Civilized Person Follow him on twitter:@wenzeleconomics and on LinkedIn. His youtube series is here: Robert Wenzel Talks Economics. More about Wenzel here.

35 comments:

  1. I fhink the existence of the Deep State, their immoral Weltanschauung, and their perfidious tactics are know and understood by anyone inclined to care. What Judge Napolitano is doing is taking a principled stand based on the plain meaning of the Constitution. You may honestly disagree with his assessment, but to hint that he has some impure, ulterior motive is contemptible. This man is one of the few constent and relatively mainstream voices for liberty we have.

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    1. He's been wrong over and over for the past couple years since he returned from his suspension.

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  2. According to libertarian code, every politician is guilty of initiating force. I never signed the constitution so the constitution is tyranny and fascist.

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    1. Sure but the president swore an oath to obey and defend the Constitution, therefore he either does that, or leaves the job, or is impeached.

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    2. By you advocating impeachment, you are advocating that government agents take certain actions with violate the NAP, therefore you are not a libertarian.

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    3. Hello, limelemon,

      "By you advocating impeachment, you are advocating that government agents take certain actions with violate the NAP"

      Are you for real? Who told you - WHO TOLD YOU - that a person has a right to be president? Do you even try to understand what rights come from and what they imply, or do you just wield the terms like a person wields a cat by the tail to see where it lands?

      The charge that I'm no libertarian is especially risible, akin to a socialist telling me I'm not a Capitalist.

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  3. Response here.
    --" First, the Judge mentions no names so it is difficult to know who these exchanges were between."---

    So what? That's not the point of his argument. Here's merely establishing that there was enough information to justify the investigation.

    ---"Second, can we really assume that Trump would know about such exchanges?"---

    That's not the point the Judge is making. You're conflating the accusation of conspiracy with the obstruction of justice charge. A person can be accused of obstruction of justice even when the person didn't commit a crime. The Judge doesn't fall into that trap.

    ---"Napolitano says none of this, just that Mueller indicted Russians as if that carried significant weight."---

    It does carry significant weight in the sense that there was enough information the president of the United States was briefed or had to be briefed about to justify the investigation, therefore lending increased validity to the charge that the president made several efforts to obstruct the investigation. That's the point the Judge is making.

    ---"The most a libertarian can do is use them as tools. From this perspective, there is nothing to gain from seeing Trump impeached."---

    Oh, yes there is. For one, the chance is there for someone else afterwards to say "enough nonsense" and remove the tariffs, end the trade war. Or do you like your taxes (tariffs) cold? I certainly don't.

    Leaving that aside, if your criticism of Napolitano and Amash is based on a pragmatic argument, i.e. "don't rock the boat, we need the guy", then just say so, but don't try your hand at a legal analysis of the case because, frankly, yours stinks. Napolitano and Amash are both lawyers; Napolitano is a Constitutional scholar and historian with a long history of principled argumentation. Amash has been 100% consistent with his criticism of both Obama and the president on the very same Constitutional grounds. Did you really expect them to just shut up and kneel before the president? Dan Bongino (that statist creature) certainly says so.

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    1. What the hell are you talking about? The president swore an oath to obey and defend the constitution. That's his job. Are you saying he can act like any mob boss and defend his interests never mind the fact the guy has a hold of the nuclear weapons codes?

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    3. Hello, Sherlock,

      I am still in the middle whether you're confused or playing a game. The president is not being prosecuted. If he obstructed justice, per the evidence presented by the Muller investigation, then Congress ha the right under Article II to impeach the president. The Fourth applies to arbitrary prosecutorial proceedings such as searches, seizures and arrests without probable cause. What does that have to do with anything?

      Again, you, like Rob, are confusing the allegation the president conspired with Russian agents or officials to sway the election, with the Obstruction of Justice accusation for which the Muller investigation presented Congress with evidence which, per the view of Judge Napolitano (a Constitutional scholar) and Rep. Amash (a lawyer) is enough to justify impeachment proceedings.

      Then this:
      "If the search or inquiry is illegal based on Constitutional law..."

      It wasn't illegal or unconstitutional. It may have been irksome, but that doesn't mean the president cannot be impeached for obstructing an investigation.

      I'm taking the side of the people who see what Trump fanboys don't want to see: The president acted like a king.

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    5. Hello, Sherlock!

      "but that's not what I was talking about."

      That's the problem right there. You're all over the place. You conflate one accusation with the other accusation. Trump was exonerated from the conspiracy charge or at least Muller couldn't find evidence that the Trump campaign conspired with the Russians, but that doesn't mean the president didn't engage in impeachable behavior by obstructing the investigation.

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    7. Hello, Sherlock,

      In response to: "The second accusation flowed from the faulty and ill-started first."

      Now you're resorting to making stuff up. The second accusation flowed from Trump's obstruction of the investigation, not from the first accusation. If I'm accused of stealing something which I didn't do and I go ahead and kill the investigator out of pure rage, I can't claim the second thing flowed from the first.

      You're looking more and more ridiculous.

      "Impeachability is not part of my argument."

      For Gawd's sake, Sherlock. What do you think everyone is talking about, if not impeachability? Neither Napolitano nor Amash are saying the president should be handcuffed and thrown in a cage. They made the case for IMPEACHMENT. Stop obfuscating!

      "Leave Trumpy aloooone! Bwaa!" I can just picture you with the blond wig... Ugh.

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  5. The problem with the judge is the same problem I have with Amash: The BIG issue here is the Deep State attempting to take down Trump because he might turn out to be anti-war and might seek better relations with Russia. David Stockman and Scott Horton both note that there was never any predicate activity or crime giving rise to probable cause that Trump "colluded" with the Russians and it is doubtful that Russia "meddled" at all in the election.

    Pushing this silly "Trump committed obstruction" line of nonsense harms the ablity of libertarians to use this outrageous episode of government criminality to attack the Deep State, the Neocons, the war-mongers, the AOC wacky "progressives", the MSM and the Sarwark cabal. You can always mention that Trump might be impeached and prosecuted for war crimes, along with Obama, the Bushes and the Clintons. But pushing the "Trump committed obstruction" line is absurd and harmful.

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    1. Bob, the problem is not how the investigation began or under what circumstances. The problem is that the president demonstrably engaged in obstruction, whether wittingly or because he's witless. He obstructed an investigation, whether you like it or not. It's in the very same report where it says there was no evidence to say the president or then candidate Trump, and his campaign, conspired with the Russians to slant the election or engage in election fraud. If you trust the truth in the report regarding the conspiracy allegation, then you wil have to explain why a person of reason should accept a special pleading argument when it comes to the conclusion that the president engaged in obstruction of justice. Is it because he's a Republican? Team Red vs. Team Blue?

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    2. Dear Old Mexican, if we trust the man saying that there was no evidence regarding conspiracy, then it seems reasonable that we should trust that same man when he says:

      "While this report does not conclude that the President committed a crime, it also does not exonerate him."

      First, there is no obstruction charge here. If Mueller wanted to charge obstruction, he would have.

      The current DOJ decided to not charge it either.

      If the Democrats want to impeach, be my guest. But, if you shoot at the king, you best not miss. And, it is inevitable that the Dems will miss because the Repubs hold the Senate.

      The Dems would slit their own throats with the House impeaching Trump.

      But, Mueller's statement is really strange and, truth be told, scary. Our system of justice does not require exoneration. We do not have to prove our innocence or the lack of our guilt.

      This Prosecutor seems to have been extra special.

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    3. Hello, Just Curious,

      Regarding this:
      "If Mueller wanted to charge obstruction, he would have."

      He can't. That's the law. He can't charge a sitting president. He presented a case so Congress can begin impeachment proceedings which Congress is still debating whether to proceed or not, but those facts do not invalidate what the Judge and Rep. Amash are arguing: That there is enough evidence to demonstrate a clear pattern of behavior from the president to obstruct an investigation he assured everyone would exonerate him. Again, he may have done it on purpose or because he's an idiot. You can't simply obviate that, so you just want it to pfhtt! go away, go away...

      Regarding this:
      "The current DOJ decided to not charge it either."

      Trump's appointee? No surprise there.

      Regarding this:
      "We do not have to prove our innocence or the lack of our guilt."

      What are you talking about? His innocence regarding what, obstruction of justice? Who is asking him to prove his innocence? That's not what is going on here.

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  6. Has Judge Napolitano apologized for his constant initiating force when he was a judge in NJ? If he is putting forth a principle now, then he needs to apologize for all his past violations of the principle, right?

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    1. When did he initiate force? Explain, if you're able.

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    2. I've heard Napolitano speak on a few occasions, and I don't think that he's an anarcho-capitalist, more a minarchist, at best. If that's right, he would see a legitimate role for state-run courts.

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    3. When he was a judge, as part of the government, he knowingly aided and abetted violations of the NAP. If you're confused about this, email Walter Block. The judge needs to apologize.

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    4. Re: limelemon,

      "When he was a judge, as part of the government, he knowingly aided and abetted violations of the NAP. "

      So you're just guessing he did.

      I figured.

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  7. I can't understand. It seems the judge has gone crazy.

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    1. "Leave Trumpy Aloneeee! Bwaa!"

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    2. Nobody is saying "leave Trump alone" because he's Trump and we love him. That's just a bunch of garbage. The focus must be on the illegal spying and the investigation itself. Focusing on "obstruction" is only helping with the ongoing coverup of that process. We all know that Trump is a loose cannon and has horrible policies. His "obstruction" transgressions are quite minor when looking at the big picture. Why not impeach him for ignoring the congressional vote to stop the war in Yemen? Or for bombing Syria without a declaration of war?

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    3. Spot on Mr Roddis. The thing that constantly amazes me is how people of discernment cant help but get caught up in the minutia! Keeping an eye on the prize of exposing anything deep state is not entertained by many.

      It should however be our top priority. They Idiocracy grows by the day and any hope at all has to make sense to them to create leverage.

      Keep up the good work.

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    4. Hello, Bob Roddis,

      Regarding this: "Nobody is saying "leave Trump alone" because he's Trump and we love him."

      Don't say "Nobody". You have no idea. No even a clue.

      Regarding this:
      "Focusing on 'obstruction' is only helping with the ongoing cover-up of that process."

      Such pragmatic arguments are invalid and irksome. Don't rock the boat - there are higher things to keep in mind!

      Please.

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    5. He's likely being blackmailed.

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  8. Whatever Trump was allegedly "obstructing" it sure as hell wasn't "justice."

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  9. Dear Old Mexican,

    First, the law is not clear on whether a sitting President can be indicted for Obstruction. But, let’s say that the law clearly says that a President cannot be indicted.

    Then, why did’t Mueller state: “The evidence is clear that President Trump obstructed justice.” Then, Mueller could have left it to Congress and impeachment proceedings could have already begun.

    Mueller didn’t do that. Why? Well, he told you why, if you bothered to pay attention: Because the evidence wasn’t there.

    And, yes, of course, Trump’s appointee is not going to charge Trump. But, as Dems liked to say when Obama had won the White House: Elections have consequences.

    A prosecutor’s job is to determine whether there was probable cause that a person committed a crime. Mueller could have, and, in my opinion, should have reported his findings in the following way:

    “This report does not conclude that the President committed a crime.”

    That’s the end of the prosecutor’s job. The prosecutor is not looking to clear someone.

    The fact that Mueller concluded it in the way that he did was a statement made beyond the typical duty of the prosecutor.

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    1. Hello, Just Asking,

      Firat, Mueller's report states at least ten instances of obstruction of justice from the president (one instance being when he wasn't yet president). But: "The Mueller team refrained from charging Trump because investigators abided by an Office of Legal Counsel (OLC) opinion that a sitting president cannot stand trial", a trial where the president has an opportunity to clear his name. So the report does not accuse the president of obstruction, nevertheless it does not exonerate him, and thus leaves the decision to determine whether the president obstructed justice or not to Congress.

      Second, based on the ten instances described in the Muller report, Judge Napolitano (not someone who has kneeled before H.R.M. Trump) and Rep. Amash concluded that the evidence is sufficient to impeach the president.

      Conclusions: Mueller's report does not accuse the president of obstruction of justice, because that would leave the president in an unfair possition of not being able to clear his name in a trial because, by a legal opinion the team abided by, a sitting president cannot be indicted and put on trial. But nevertheless presents evidence of obstruction by which Congress can decide if the president should be impeached.

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    2. 'Never Trumpers' are willing to go with anything to railroad the President, even if it means enabling sweeping new powers of the deep state while destroying relations with Russia, because Orange Man Bad.

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