CORPORATE NEWS IS NOT WORTH YOUR TIME
Former federal prosecutor Renato Mariotti talks about the possible prosecution of Matt Gaetz.
Notes on the Podcast
- Gaetz has finally hired an attorney and stopped running his mouth so publicy.
- Gaetz is trying to act like Trump in response to the investigation. The big difference is that Trump controlled the Justice Department, Gaeta does not.
- There is no accountability. We are still waiting for Trump to be indicted.
- Barr did fantastic job misleading the pubic about Trump’s collusion with the Russians.
- Gaetz thinks he can talk his way out of this.
- Gaetz’s girlfriend is the daughter of a big donor.
- Greenberg was the tax collector in Seminole County. He created a website slandering his political opposition as a pedophile.
- This person, went to authorities which led to an investigation of Greenberg.
- The investigation uncovered evidence of an identity theft scheme, making drivers licenses for women he is meeting on a Sugar Daddy website.
- Then, the investigation led to uncovering his interactions with an underage girl who had been interacting with Matt Gaetz.
- Politico reported that a few days before Greenberg was indicted, he texted all his buddies that they had better lawyer up. This text provided the feds a list of witnesses.
- They don’t need to prove Gaetz knew her age.
- There’s the sex trafficking statute (Commercial Sex Act) they can prosecute him under. This involves transporting underage person for commercial sex.
- They would argue that this wasn’t commercial sex.
- Gaeta has a very good lawyer.
- Gaetz is sending payments to Greenberg and Greenberg is distributing the money. Greenberg can testify about the purpose of the payments.
- Greenberg can tell the story of the criminal activity.
Dereck Chauvin put his knee on the neck of George Floyd, stared into the camera and dared us to do anything about it.
Donald Trump did exactly what Chauvin did – he put his knee on the neck of democracy, decency, legality. He stared into the camera and dared us to do anything about it.
Putin has done exactly what Chauvin did – he has put his knee on the neck of Navalny, stared into the camera and dared us to do anything about it.
These are lessons, authoritarian lessons. They are demonstrating to us that that they can do whatever they want. They can even murder one of us right in front of our very eyes and we can’t do a damn thing about it.
We have won tonight, in the Chauvin case. We have won because of the mobilization of millions of people putting pressure on the system to live up to its ideals. We have won because of the courage and discipline of a group of witnesses. We have won and we can win again.
We must stand together and stand up to the boot of authoritarian rule on our necks. We stopped them with the Chauvin verdict. That’s why the legal system avoids jury trials if at all possible, especially for powerful defendants. We can, and we must stop them again. We must demand that the participants in the corrupt crime spree that was the Trump administration are held to account. We must demand that dangerous men like Putin and the oligarchs that surround him are held to account.
If we do not see, truly see that these actions are preparations for authoritarianism, they will come back for us. They are obviously not phased in the least by the electoral defeat in 2020. The tidal wave of voter suppression being orchestrated by the Republicans is just another way to take power because they cannot win it legitimately. It is their way back in power. We must take them seriously or we will find ourselves in 2022 and 2024 with another authoritarian take-over of the governmental process. If we flirt with that possibility, we may never recover.
That look you saw on Chavin’s face when he was kneeling there, crushing the life out of a man, is the same look you would see on the face of Bill Barr, Donald Trump, Jared Kushner, Roger Stone, Steve Bannon, Pompeo, Pence, Steven Miller, Manafort and many others while they crushed the life out of anyone who opposed them if they thought for one minute they could get away with it. If we let them get away with it, they will crush the life out of democracy and our lives will be unalterably changed. If we don’t take them seriously, if we don’t fight them we will find ourselves living under that knee being given the same compassion and respect Dereck Chavin gave George Floyd.
- On the internet: Video after video of police officers behaving abusively, escalating situations, cursing at people, threatening them, intimidating them, killing them, all over the country. CNN has an expert on to explain that our brains work differently when we’re under stress.
- The “stress professor” and the Vanderbilt guy both agreed that we need more training for police.
- I’ve been involved in criminology in one way or another for fifty years. I did research on female police partners and male use of deadly force in the 70s. Training is not the problem. Minneapolis, for example, spent a small fortune on training.
- Police culture will win out over all the training and policy in the world.
- If you look at the Derek Chauvin case as an example, Chauvin didn’t take the stand because basically his defense is that he didn’t do anything wrong and that he would do it again if he had the chance.
- It appears that Alexander Navalny is dangerously close to dying. In the past, he told colleagues he couldn’t understand people using hunger strikes to advance their cases. It seemed, to him, merely a way to hand the state a tool. But, evidently the situation for him in prison was so bad, he resorted to using his own body as a tool to try to get help. It’s unlikely to work. The world stands by and watches.
- Gary Kasperov, former Russian chess player and current activist, pointed out on Twitter that the West continues to deal with Putin as if he were some quasi-democratic head of state. Kasperov noted that Biden’s decision to turn around a ship to try to appease Putin was the wrong tactic. Autocrats, kleptocrats, authoritarians view offers of compromise as weakness.
- Biden deals with Putin the way the Democrats deal with the Republicans. When will they learn that authoritarians cannot be compromised with or appealed to?
- Joe Scarborough, who helped elect Trump, is now back to his rabid Republican heckling. It is difficult for me to understand how anybody could think that Scarborough was an ally. He and the dreadful Mika were up Trump’s ass until Trump threatened to reveal their adulterous affair. People need to remember we have Mika on tape asking Trump’s permission to ask him a “hard” question. Morning Joe as outlived its usefulness if it ever had any. It belongs in the Chris Matthews trash bag of programming. MSNBC needs to do better.
- While I’m on MSNBC, the nightly news programs continue to use Jason “island of misfit black girls” Johnson as a commentator. He lost his job at the Root for his nasty, racist comment about the women who worked for Bernie Sanders, and MSNBC punished him with a few weeks off air. But, he’s back now with a vengeance. Joy Reid loves him because she actively worked to destroy Sanders’ campaign. The lesson here? You can say anything and get away with it if it’s about Bernie Sanders or his campaign.
- The new feral cat we are socializing woke me up at 3:30 in the morning because his food bowls were empty. I’m wide awake, but he’s back asleep, stretched out at the foot of the bed on a quilt. They learn so quickly. Cats are the masters of psychological manipulation. His name is Oliver Wendell Holmes.
If you don’t do anything else today, read this article about the legal underpinnings of the Chauvin trial.
Author of “Deadly Monopolies,” “Medical Apartheid,” and “Carte Blanche.”
Interview on CSPAN