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Informing Hawaii's voters

America's Institutions Riddled with Corruption

Paul Craig Roberts

PaulCraigRoberts.org

August 27, 2014

By Paul Craig Roberts

Every public institution in the United States and most private ones are corrupt.

To tell this story would be a multi-book task. Lawrence Stratton and I have written one small volume of the story. Our book, The Tyranny of Good Intentions, now with two editions and multiple printings, documents the corruption of law in the United States and has been cited in rulings by Federal District and Appeal Court judges.

Law is just one public institution, but it is a cornerstone of society. When law goes, everything goes.

Only about 4 percent of federal felony cases go to trial. Almost all, 96 percent, are settled by negotiated plea bargains. Law & Order Conservatives condemn plea bargains for the wrong reason. They think plea bargains let criminals off easy.

In fact, plea bargains are used by prosecutors to convict the innocent along with the guilty. Plea bargains eliminate juries and time-consuming trials, that is, plea bargains eliminate all work on the part of prosecutors and police and lead to high conviction rates for prosecutors, the main indicator of their career success. Once upon a time, prosecutors pursued justice. They carefully examined police investigations and only indicted suspects whose conviction they thought could be obtained by a jury. Sloppy police work was discarded.

No more. Once indicted and provided with a lawyer, the defendant learns that his lawyer has no intention of defending him before a jury. The lawyer knows that the chances of getting even a totally innocent defendant found not guilty is slim to non-existent. Prosecutors, with the consent of judges, suborn perjury for which they are permitted to pay with money and dropped charges against real criminals, and prosecutors routinely withhold evidence favorable to the defendant. If a prosecutor detects that a defendant intends to fight, the prosecutor piles on charges until the defendant’s lawyer convinces the defendant that no jury will dismiss all of so many charges and that the one or two that the jury convicts on will bring a much longer sentence than the lawyer can negotiate. The lawyer tells the defendant that if you go to trail, you will be using up the time of prosecutors and judges, and the inconvenience that you cause them will send you away for many a year.

In some state and local courts it is still possible on occasion to get an almost fair trial if you can afford an attorney well enough connected to provide it. But even in non-federal courts the system is stacked against the defendant. Many prisons have been privatized, and privatized prisons require high incarceration rates in order to be profitable. The same holds for juvenile detention prisons. Not long ago two Pennsylvania judges were convicted for accepting payments from private detention prisons for each kid they sentenced.

Judges prefer plea bargains despite the fact that plea bargains amount to self-incrimination, because plea bargains dispense with time-consuming trials that cause backed-up and crowded court dockets. Trials also demand far more work on the part of a judge than accepting a plea bargain.

The fact of the matter is that in America today you are expected to convict yourself. Even your lawyer expects it. The torture is not physical; it is psychological. The system is severely biased against the defendant. Conviction by a jury brings a much heavier sentence than conviction by a deal that the defendant’s attorney negotiates with the prosecutor’s office. All the prosecutor wants is a conviction. Give him his conviction for his record as an effective prosecutor, and you get off lighter.

The injustice lies in the fact that the rule applies to the innocent as well as to the guilty.
The prosecutor and often the judge do not care whether you are innocent or guilty, and your lawyer knows that it does not matter to the outcome.

The police have learned that such a small number of cases go to trial that their evidence is seldom tested in court. Consequently, often police simply look for someone who might have committed the crime based on past criminal records, select someone with a record, and offer him or her up as the perpetrator of the crime. This police practice is one explanation for high recidivism rates.

In the totally corrupt American criminal justice (sic) system, anyone indicted, no matter how innocent, is almost certain to be convicted.

Let’s take the case of Alabama Democratic Governor Don Siegelman. Judging by the reported evidence in the media and testimony by those familiar with the case, Don Siegelman, a popular Democratic governor of Alabama was a victim of a Karl Rove operation to instruct Democrats that their political party would not be permitted a comeback in executive authority in the Republican South.

There is no doubt but that the Alabama Republican newspapers and TV stations are political tools. And there is little doubt that former Republican US Attorneys Alice Martin and Leura Canary and Republican US federal district court judge Mark Fuller were willing participants in Karl Rove’s political campaign to purge the South of popular democrats.

Republican US district court judge Mark Fuller was arrested in Atlanta this month for beating his wife in an Atlanta hotel. The judge, in whose honor courts must rise, was charged with battery and taken to the Fulton County jail at 2:30AM Sunday morning August 10. If you look at the mug shot of Mark Fuller, he doesn’t inspire confidence. http://www.bradblog.com/?p=10748 Fuller was a bitter enemy of Siegelman and should have recused himself from Siegelman’s trial, but ethical behavior required more integrity than Fuller has.

Among many, Scott Horton, a professor of law at Columbia University has provided much information in Harper’s magazine involving the corruption of Fuller and the Republican prosecuting attorneys, Alice Martin and Leura Canary. See: http://harpers.org/blog/2008/02/another-abusive-prosecution-by-alice-mar... and http://harpers.org/blog/2008/02/cbs-more-prosecutorial-misconduct-in-sie... and http://harpers.org/blog/2007/08/judge-fuller-and-the-trial-of-don-siegel... and http://harpers.org/blog/2007/06/siegelman-sentenced-riley-rushes-to-wash... and http://harpers.org/blog/2007/10/karl-rove-linked-to-siegelman-prosecution/ and http://harpers.org/blog/2007/12/karl-rove-william-canary-and-the-siegelm... and http://harpers.org/blog/2008/02/rove-and-siegelman/ and http://harpers.org/blog/2007/08/the-pork-barrel-world-of-judge-mark-fuller/ and see OpEdNews February 6, 2012, “Why did Karl Rove and his GOP Thugs target Don Siegelman in Alabama?” and http://www.huffingtonpost.com/bennett-l-gershman/why-is-don-siegelman_b_...

Google the case and you will see everything but justice.

The Republican frame-up of Siegelman is so obvious that various courts have overturned some of the bogus convictions. But the way “justice” works in America makes courts fearful of discrediting the criminal justice (sic) system by coming down hard on an obvious frame-up. To make the fact obvious that federal courts are used for political reasons is detrimental to the myth of justice in which gullible Americans believe.

Siegelman’s innocence is so obvious that 113 former state attorneys general have come out in his support. These attorneys general together with federal judges and members of Congress have written to Obama and to US attorney general Eric Holder urging Siegelman’s release from prison. Instead of releasing the innocent Siegelman, Obama and Holder have protected the Republican frameup of a Democratic governor.

Remember, what did President George W. Bush do when his vice president’s chief aid was convicted for the felony of revealing the name of a secret CIA operative? Bush wiped out the sentence of Cheney’s convicted operative. He remained convicted, but served no sentence.

Remember, President George H. W. Bush’s administration pardoned the neoconservative criminals in the Reagan administration who were convicted by the Reagan administration for crimes related to Iran-Contra.

So why hasn’t the Obama regime pardoned former Alabama Governor Don Siegelman who unlike other pardoned parties is actually innocent? Siegleman was bringing the Democratic Party back in the corrupt Republican state of Alabama. He was a successful governor who would have been US senator, and Karl Rove apparently exterminated him politically in order to protect the Republican hold on the South.

It is extremely ironic that the formerly solid Democratic South, plundered, looted, and raped by Republican armies, votes Republican. If anything shows the insouciance of a people, the South’s Republican vote is the best demonstration. The South votes for a party that destroyed the South and its culture. There is no greater evidence of a people totally ignorant of, or indifferent to, their history than the Southern people who vote Republican.

Obama can’t pardon Siegelman, which Justice requires, because Obama cannot confront the self-protective mechanism in the Justice (sic) Department. Obama is too weak of a person to stand up for Justice. Obama has acquiesced to the Republican and DOJ frame-up of a popular Democratic Governor.

Justice in America? It is not worth 5 cents on the New York stock exchange.

If you want to stand up for justice, click here: http://www.gofundme.com/Railroading-Don-Siegelman

Police are as remote from concerns of justice as are prosecutors. Generally speaking, while there might be a few exceptions, the ranks of the police seem to be filled with violent psychopaths. The police seldom show any self-control and their violent nature makes police a great threat to society. Invariably, police bring violence to the scene: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IlY9C6pzxKc

Killing unarmed black men seems to be a police specialty. http://truth-out.org/news/item/25815-lapd-refusal-to-release-information...

Assaults and killings by police seldom make it beyond the local news. The lack of national coverage of crimes committed by police against the public leaves Americans with the incorrect impression that the use of excessive force by police is an occasional and unfortunate result but not a real problem. Police apologists say that an occasional mistake is the price of being safe. But police violence is an expression of police culture, not an unfortunate mistake, and what we hear is only the tip of the iceberg. http://rare.us/story/5-reasons-the-police-brutality-in-ferguson-is-just-...

The large number of violent acts that police commit against members of the public are not entirely the fault of the police. It is well known that bullies and psychopaths are attracted to the power over others conveyed by a police badge. Considering this known fact, police should receive training in anger management. Instead, they are trained to regard the public as an enemy against whom the police should take no chances. Police are trained to subdue a suspect with violence and question the suspect later when the suspect is under control in jail. This procedure means that even those who are totally innocent bear all the risks of being confronted by police.

Governments, media, and citizens are also responsible. They have allowed police to be militarized and to be inappropriately trained. Indeed, city, county, state, and federal governments have removed all barriers to the use of excessive force by police. Handed such power, the police use it.

In response to my column about Ferguson, former police officers wrote to me to report that they left the police force because they could not accept the culture of violence that is now ingrained in police departments. What these former police officers could not accept causes no problem for the Fox “News” talking heads. http://rare.us/story/jon-stewart-returns-with-powerful-ferguson-monologu...

Can police departments be cleansed of their violent culture? Can prosecutors serve justice instead of career? Can Fox “News” talking heads cease being racists? Don’t hold your breath.

Copyright © Paul Craig Roberts 2014

About Paul Craig Roberts

Paul Craig Roberts was Assistant Secretary of the Treasury for Economic Policy and associate editor of the Wall Street Journal. He was columnist for Business Week, Scripps Howard News Service, and Creators Syndicate. He has had many university appointments and his Internet columns have attracted a worldwide following. Roberts' latest books are The Failure of Laissez Faire Capitalism and Economic Dissolution of the West and How America Was Lost.

Washington Piles on the Lies

Paul Craig Roberts

PaulCraigRoberts.org

August 28, 2014

By Paul Craig Roberts

The latest Washington lie, this one coming from NATO, is that Russia has invaded Ukraine with 1,000 troops and self-propelled artillery.

How do we know that this is a lie? Is it because we have heard nothing but lies about Russia from NATO, from US ambassador to the UN Samantha Power, from assistant secretary of state Victoria Nuland, from Obama and his entire regime of pathological liars, and from the British, German, and French governments along with the BBC and the entirety of the Western media?

This, of course, is a good reason for knowing that the latest Western propaganda is a lie. Those who are pathological liars don’t suddenly start telling the truth.

But there are even better reasons for understanding that Russia has not invaded Ukraine with 1,000 troops.

One reason is that Putin has invested heavily in diplomacy backed by unprovocative behavior. He would not risk his bet on diplomacy by sending in troops too few in number to have a decisive effect on the outcome.

Another reason is that if Putin decides he has no alternative to sending the Russian military to protect the Russian residents in eastern and southern Ukraine, Putin will send in enough troops to do the job quickly as he did in Georgia when the American and Israeli trained Georgian army invaded South Ossetia and was destroyed in a few hours by the Russian response. If you hear that 100,000 Russian troops accompanied by air cover have invaded Ukraine, it would be a more believable claim.

A third reason is that the Russian military does not need to send troops into Ukraine in order to stop the bombing and artillery shelling of the Russian populations by Washington’s puppet government in Kiev. The Russian air force can easily and quickly destroy the Ukrainian air force and artillery and, thereby, stop the Ukrainian attack on the secessionist provinces.

It was only two weeks ago that a fabricated report spread by the UK Guardian and the BBC that a Russian armored convoy entered Ukraine and was destroyed by the Ukrainian Military. And two weeks prior to that we had the hoax of the satellite images allegedly released by the US State Department that the corrupt US ambassador in Kiev spread around the world on social media allegedly showing that Russian forces were firing into Ukraine. One or two weeks from now we will have another lie, and another a week or two after that, and so on.

The cumulative effect of lie piled upon lie for most people is to build the view that the Russians are up to no good. Once this view is established, Western governments can take more serious moves against Russia.

The alleged entry of 1,000 Russian soldiers into Ukraine has been declared by NATO Brigadier General Niko Tak to be a “significant escalation in Russia’s military interference in Ukraine.” The champion liar Samantha Power told the US Security Council that “Russia has to stop lying.” The UK ambassador to the UN said that Russia was guilty of “a clear violation of sovereign Ukrainian territory.” UK prime minister Cameron warned Russia of “further consequences.” German chancellor Merkel announced that there would be more sanctions. A German Security Council advisor declared that “war with Russia is an option.” Polish foreign minister Sikorski called it Russian aggression that required international action. French president Hollande declared Russia’s behavior to be “intolerable.” Ukraine’s security council imposed mandatory conscription.

This suicidal drive toward war with Russia by Europe’s leaders is based entirely on a transparent lie that 1,000 Russian troops crossed into Ukraine

Of course the Western media followed in lock-step. The BBC, CNN, and Die Welt are among the most reckless and irresponsible.

The mountain of lies piled up by Western governments and media has obscured the true story. The US government orchestrated the overthrow of the elected government in Ukraine and imposed a US puppet in Kiev. Washington’s puppet government began issuing threats and committing violent acts against the Russian populations in the former Russian territories that Soviet leaders attached to Ukraine. The Russian people in eastern and southern Ukraine resisted the threat brought to them by Washington’s puppet government in Kiev.

Washington continually accuses the Russian government of supporting the people in the territories who have voted their separation from Ukraine. There would be no war, Washington alleges, except for Russian support. But, of course, Washington could easily stop the violence by ordering its puppet government in Kiev to stop the bombing and shelling of the former Russian provinces. If Russia can tell the “separatists” not to fight, Washington can tell Kiev not to fight.

The only possible conclusion from the facts is that Washington is determined to involve Europe in a war with Russia or at least in an armed standoff in order to break up Europe’s political and economic relations with Russia.

Europe’s leaders are going along with this because European countries, except for Charles de Gaulle’s France, have not had independent foreign policies since the end of World War II. They follow Washington’s lead and are well paid for doing so.

The inability of Europe to produce independent leadership dooms Russian President Putin’s diplomacy to failure. If European capitals cannot make decisions independently of Washington, there is no scope for Putin’s diplomacy.

Notice that the very day after Putin met with Washington’s Ukrainian vassal in an effort to resolve the situation, the new lie of Russian invasion was issued in order to ensure that no good can come of the meeting in which Putin invested his time and energy.

Washington’s only interest is in hegemony. Washington has no interest in resolving the situation that Washington itself created in order to bring discomfort and confusion to Russia. With the caveat that the situation could be resolved by Ukrainian economic collapse, otherwise the longer Putin waits to resolve the situation by force, the more difficult the task will be.

Copyright © Paul Craig Roberts 2014

About Paul Craig Roberts

Paul Craig Roberts was Assistant Secretary of the Treasury for Economic Policy and associate editor of the Wall Street Journal. He was columnist for Business Week, Scripps Howard News Service, and Creators Syndicate. He has had many university appointments and his Internet columns have attracted a worldwide following. Roberts' latest books are The Failure of Laissez Faire Capitalism and Economic Dissolution of the West and How America Was Lost.

U.S. Fighting All Sides of the War in Syria

The Intercept

By Glenn Greenwald

August 26, 2014

It was not even a year ago when we were bombarded with messaging that Syrian President Bashar al-Assad is a Supreme Evil and Grave Threat, and that military action against his regime was both a moral and strategic imperative. The standard cast of “liberal interventionists” –  Tony BlairAnne-Marie SlaughterNicholas Kristof and Samantha Power - issued stirring sermons on the duties of war against Assad. Secretary of State John Kerry actually compared Assad to (guess who?) Hitler, instructing the nation that “this is our Munich moment.” Striking Assad, he argued, “is a matter of national security. It’s a matter of the credibility of the United States of America. It’s a matter of upholding the interests of our allies and friends in the region.”

U.S. military action against the Assad regime was thwarted only by overwhelming American public opinion which opposed it and by a resounding rejection by the UK Parliament of Prime Minister David Cameron’s desire to assume the usual subservient British role in support of American wars.

Now the Obama administration and American political class is celebrating the one-year anniversary of the failed “Bomb Assad!” campaign by starting a new campaign to bomb those fighting against Assad – the very same side the U.S. has been arming over the last two years.

Read more . . .

CDC Whistleblower Confesses to MMR Vaccine and Autism Cover-Up

Natural News

August 27, 2014

By Mike Adams

BREAKING: CDC whistleblower William Thompson has now gone public with a statement posted on the website of the law firm representing him, Morgan Verkamp LLC. (See the full statement reprinted below.)

The statement opens with a blatant admission of scientific fraud at the CDC:

My name is William Thompson. I am a Senior Scientist with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, where I have worked since 1998. I regret that my coauthors and I omitted statistically significant information in our 2004 article published in the journal Pediatrics. The omitted data suggested that African American males who received the MMR vaccine before age 36 months were at increased risk for autism. Decisions were made regarding which findings to report after the data were collected, and I believe that the final study protocol was not followed.

Read more . . .

A Kamaaina Analyzes the Fall of Governor Abercrombie

Honolulu Civil Beat

The Hawaii governor's blunt talk may have been the straight truth but his bedside manner left much to be desired.

By Denby Fawcett

August 12, 2014

Now that dust has settled, it might be helpful to turn to the Hawaiian pidgin English dictionary to get a better grip on why Hawaii Gov. Neil Abercrombie was so handily blasted out of office by his underfunded and relatively unknown challenger, state Sen. David Ige.

On Primary Election Day, Ige was still so unfamiliar to some voters, I heard a fellow refer to him as “the Japanese guy running against Abercrombie.”

A key reason Abercrombie became Hawaii’s first incumbent governor to lose a primary election is what I call the “Wot, Boddah You? “ factor.

Read more . . .

Pat Saiki: Fighting to Reverse the Hawaii GOP Downward Spiral

Honolulu Civil Beat

By Denby Fawcett

August 19, 2014

Hawaii GOP Chairwoman Pat Saiki’s Great Challenge

At age 84, Hawaii GOP chairwoman Pat Saiki has left behind a comfortable life, playing golf twice a week, hand-stitching Hawaiian quilts, and hanging out with family and friends to take on an enormous challenge: getting more Republicans elected to public office in a diehard Democrat state.

With just seven Republicans in the state House and only one Republican in the state Senate, she has her hands full.

Political analyst Neal Milner says any candidate running as a Republican in Hawaii, no matter how worthy, is at a great disadvantage from the beginning.

Read more . . .

Interview with Cam Cavasso, Candidate for U.S. Senate

Cam Cavasso (R) is running for U.S. Senate against incumbent Brian Schatz (D), a Jew. Brian was appointed, not elected, to the position. Governor Neil Abercrombie (D) appointed him to the office when Senator Daniel Inouye (D) passed away in December 2012.

Kelii Akina, who is himself running for an at-large position at the Office of Hawaiian Affairs (OHA), a nonpartisan office, interviews Cam.

Fed's Fischer: Your Cash Used for Bail-Ins

Hawaii Political Info introduction: Stanley Fischer, dual citizen of Israel and the U.S., who was the head of Israel's central bank, stepped directly from that into the Vice Chair position of our Federal Reserve Bank. That should have given any American the shivers, but if there was an outcry, America's Jewish-controlled mainstream news said little to nothing about it. Probably most Americans are too unaware to have noticed that not only is our central bank run by a succession of Jews, but that its second-in-command just got through heading Israel's central bank! Now, to which nation does Fischer owe his primary allegiance? It's one or the other.

Here Brother Nathaniel's message is about bank bail-ins. It's new, creative way for the banking system to relieve people of a significant chunk of their money. Notice how Fischer sugar-coats it.

August 25, 2014


Transcript

Four Gubernatorial Candidates Gather for First time in West Oahu

KHON2

By Kirk Matthews and Web Staff

August 26, 2014

The general election is two months away, but the fight for votes has begun.

The four candidates vying for the state’s top job — Republican Duke Aiona, Democrat David Ige, Independent Mufi Hannemann and Libertarian Jeff Davis — all faced-off against each other for the first time.

The candidates kept their cards close to the vest at the forum sponsored by the West Oahu Economic Development Association. Political analysts say that’s not unusual until the run-up to the general election.

Read more . . .

Link:

Gubernatorial Candidate David Ige Cancels Forum Appearance at Last Minute [Hawaii Political Info] Aug 23, 2014

David Ige's Excuses for His Last-Minute Cancellation of Forum Appearance

David Ige/photo:HPI

Opinion

With my reactions

---

DavidIge2014

FYI to Ige Supporters

August 21, 2014

Dear Supporters,

We wanted to share with you our decision to withdraw from an Oahu forum tomorrow, Friday, August 22, featuring all of the gubernatorial candidates. David contacted the other candidates this morning to explain his decision. The organization is holding the forum for its members and guests of members. We apologize to any member of that organization that had planned to attend, and for any inconvenience our withdrawal may create.

As we read the guidelines, we saw that the hosting organization stated that our participation gave them the approval to videotape the event and “distribute as it sees fit.” [Jason: This is standard. No videographer worth his salt recording for the public is going to let a candidate tell him what to do with the recorded video.] David felt that any candidate — or individual for that matter – should be concerned with this type of agreement, as we all know how statements can be taken out of context, and especially during campaign season! [Jason: Ridiculous! Grassroot Institute of Hawaii is hardly the type of organization that's going to risk its reputation by misleading the public with quotes "taken out of context." Especially when it's playing the host. If it does, good luck with putting together another forum.] When we initially agreed to the event, we were not aware we would also be consenting to use of any recording until yesterday. [What!!?? He's running for office! Isn't the object of the forum to inform the public?!]

Since then, leaders from the hosting organization have clarified their intent with all of the gubernatorial candidates. [Any candidate wishing to be considered qualified for the responsible office of governor should have had a talk with Grassroot before canceling a gubernatorial forum he had confirmed a week before, upon which a public announcement was made throughout the islands that all four gubernatorial candidates would be there, prompting a large group of people to make lunch reservations to attend the forum and news reporters from various outlets to be at the highly important event.] However, David had already accepted another off-island invitation and therefore, will not be able to participate in tomorrow’s forum. [And just what was this off-island invitation confirmed by Ige within hours or perhaps minutes of canceling his appearance at the forum?]

There will be many more public and televised opportunities open to the general public. David looks forward to allowing voters these opportunities to listen to each candidate’s views and responses to questions.

We appreciate your support and understanding. [Certainly. I understand that if David doesn't know that his actions in this case are unacceptable and irresponsible, then he is not qualified to be governor — or any other elected office holder.]

Lynn Kenton
Campaign Spokesperson

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