Tuesday, August 12, 2008

"Not Every...Violation Of The Law Is A Crime"


It really is astonishing, isn't it? We're dealing with some very dangerous and dishonest people here.

And they are going to get away with it all.


Blogger Tom Van Dyke said...

I see you're still after your pound of flesh, Shylock. You still have learned nothing of wisdom, despite your Ph.D. in the love of it.

But I still have faith in you. You're young yet.

10:58 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

You still have learned nothing of wisdom, despite your Ph.D. in the love of it.

Have you a special font of wisdom that the rest of us unenlightened types(college grads, mechanics, MFAs, JDs, etc) haven't access to, or is your form of wisdom merely to notice its lack in others, Legate Van Dyke?

1:17 AM  
Blogger Winston Smith said...

Ah, the great apologist returns, speaking archly--though still quite vaguely and inscrutably--of wisdom.

And still strangely obsessed with my Ph.D...

Oh, if only I were as wise and good as legate van D! If only I understood the hearts of men as he does, and the workings of the universe. If only I could see why, for example, it is the height of excellence to turn the DoJ into an army of partisan hacks! Oh, but the secret wisdom of this remains hidden to those of us who see only the, ya know, facts.

Glad to see you're still kicking...but sorry to see that you're still carrying water for the shredders of the Constitution.

And a little puzzled as to why you are carrying it here...

4:16 AM  
Blogger The Mystic said...

Oh how I missed the insightful arguments and carefully crafted philosophical points that Tom made.. Nothing like heralding the return of the prodigal son with arrogance, belligerence, pathetic attempts at insults, and a total lack of any substance whatsoever!


12:43 PM  
Blogger Winston Smith said...

Oh, Mystic, lamentable to see that you have not achieved the kind of enlightenment that would teach you that not every violation of the laws of logic is a fallacy...

3:05 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I am not at all convinced that Mukasey’s inaction is a bad thing. I think you would be safe to assume that whatever list of perpetrators of malfeasance, corruption, and criminality he produced would be the same list Bush would use for pardons when he leaves office. As it stands now, unless Bush issues a blanket pardon for all of the criminals in his regime (and I don’t know if he can do that), the next administration can take some action. Of course, if McCain is elected, that will be the end of it. But if Obama is elected, then his administration could appoint a Special Prosecutor. However, I seem to remember that Obama has said he would let the matter drop. I think this would be a very grave error.


4:50 PM  
Blogger Winston Smith said...

I see the point, James, but I think the damage has been done to the country when illegal means are used to make the DoJ a political organ, and then that same DoJ refuses to investigate the crime.

Even if justice were done in an Obama administration, it seems to me that there is an important respect in which the damage can never be undone.

Which is not to say that it wouldn't do anything.

But we run into a problem I've discussed before: in responding to a radically partisan president/party, Obama & co. say: we need a different way. But when the radical partisans are also criminal, and criminal investigation is called for, it's a virtual certainty that, should the investigation come along, they'll scream "partisanship!"

Which, though false, would, I fear, be a winning move, rhetorically/politically speaking.

8:07 PM  
Blogger Tom Van Dyke said...

Aw, if you know your Robert Ray, or even your Shakespeare, y'all know exactly what I'm saying.

With most knowledge just a google away [see Chuck Schumer's comments on this very issue in the NYT], your responses are either the result of laziness or disingenuousness, neither of which I have time for anymore. Both are willful ignorance, for which there is no balm or cure.

As I have gone on to other pursuits, I've learned not to argue with true believers of any stripe, religious or secular, right or left.

Just stopped back to stick a burr under WS' saddle, WS being someone I'll always consider a friend even if my affection is unrequited.

Cheers, all. Rock on. I do miss you, but the price of the pleasure of your company became too high.

1:48 AM  
Blogger Winston Smith said...

Tom, you're a pompous dipshit.

A rather likable pompous dipshit in certain ways--but a pompous dipshit nonetheless.

I wish you could be reasoned with, I really do, for you are not all bad. But, as has been proven time and again, you can't be. (See, e.g., the great 200-comment long democracy and religion discussion...) You're one of the most dogmatic true believers I've ever met, and trying to project your intellectual vices onto me and others here won't change that.

And you're not fooling anybody, in case you somehow haven't picked up on that yet.

So, while it's ever so lovely to have you stop by and spew some nonsense--just like old times!--one wonders why you continue to obsess over us denizens of my quiet little blog. Not that I don't find your vague gestures at secret wisdom and oh-so-readily available knowledge that would, of course, prove you right about everything...amusing. Nothing you gesture at proves anything you claim it does--but, again, that's just like old times. You don't want to inquire, or even genuinely debate, you just want to pretend that you can defend your indefensible position...and also to pretend to be too deep and wise to descend to actual, logical discussion. Somehow this all gives you a thrill, God knows why.

I suppose it makes you feel better to, in effect, keep chanting "Bush is right...Bush is right...Bush IS right!" over and over again, but it's a pathetic little mantra, and, despite what you and your hero seem to think, saying so doesn't make it so.

If you ever give up your true believer card and decide to discuss things like a rational person, by all means, do come on back. You don't have to agree with me about everything--or anything. But you do have to be reasonable.

But until then...well, you know what to do.

Good luck in all of your non-bullshitting-about-politics-related endeavors, man.

2:52 AM  
Blogger Tom Van Dyke said...

Odd. I was invited to become a contributor to a largely secular blog that deals with religion and the American Founding. I get along nicely with everyone, and have received praise for my work.

Maybe it's you.

2:39 PM  
Blogger The Mystic said...


Tom, are you trying to build up a mound of evidence for an insanity defense or something?

I LOVE that you just used an invitation to participate in a blog as evidence of you being a great and mighty intellectual. Honestly, that's the kind of stuff you expect to see on SNL making fun of pitiful internet nerds. You know - the kind of stuff that's so poorly written that it's not even that funny because you can't believe that there would actually be people out there like that?

Too weird, man, too weird. Do you think you've ever been wrong about anything? It's like your definition of "incorrect" is "stopped talking in the conversation". So by that definition, I'm sure you've ALWAYS been the correct one...

2:59 PM  
Blogger Winston Smith said...


I...I stand corrected, man.

I mean, they don't just give those things out to anybody...

7:55 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

As much as I hate to take the thread away from the subject away from the topic of Tom van Dyke, and his relative intellegence and sanity, Mukasey's comment is strickly speaking correct. Only some violations of the law are crimes. Those that are have to be defined as such by the law, as exposing the guilty party to criminal liabilty, of being guilty of a felony or misdemenor. For example, if the law requires all wills to be notarized before being submitted to probate and you fail to do so before submitting one, you have broken the law, but not committed a crime. You can't be charged with anything on that basis alone, though the state may fail to honor the will, etc. So, Mukasey's statement may be false, given what actually happened - lying to Congress at least is a crime - but it is not the self-contradictory howler you seem to think it is.

4:03 PM  
Blogger Winston Smith said...

Ooooh, facts, is it? Well la-dee-da Mr. lawyer-pants.

Actually, A, I in no way intended to suggest that it was a "self-contradictory howler" or anything like it. You'll note that my only comment was an expression of bafflement.

I'm not a lawyer, as is no doubt obvious, but it actually struck me as being entirely possible--even though a little paradoxical-sounding--that not every violation of the law is a crime. What struck me as outrageous is exactly what strikes you as so: that Mukasey would imply/assert that these violations were not crimes. Sure, there might be some violations that aren't...but there are others that clearly ARE. It's as if the judge in a murder trial were to shrug his shoulders and say "well, not every violation of the law is a crime." Maybe not...but at least some violations ARE crimes--and if any are, then these certainly seems to be.

'Some x are not F' does not entail 'this x is not F.'

5:38 PM  

Post a Comment

Subscribe to Post Comments [Atom]

<< Home