Submitted without (much) present comment

The following is a public statement issued by George Bush today announcing his decision to issue a line-item reprieve of Lewis Libby’s sentence. Hat-tip and thanks to Paul Kiel from whom this text was copied.

The United States Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit today rejected Lewis Libby’s request to remain free on bail while pursuing his appeals for the serious convictions of perjury and obstruction of justice. As a result, Mr. Libby will be required to turn himself over to the Bureau of Prisons to begin serving his prison sentence.

I have said throughout this process that it would not be appropriate to comment or intervene in this case until Mr. Libby’s appeals have been exhausted. But with the denial of bail being upheld and incarceration imminent, I believe it is now important to react to that decision.

From the very beginning of the investigation into the leaking of Valerie Plame’s name, I made it clear to the White House staff and anyone serving in my administration that I expected full cooperation with the Justice Department. Dozens of White House staff and administration officials dutifully cooperated.

After the investigation was under way, the Justice Department appointed United States Attorney for the Northern District of Illinois Patrick Fitzgerald as a Special Counsel in charge of the case. Mr. Fitzgerald is a highly qualified, professional prosecutor who carried out his responsibilities as charged.

This case has generated significant commentary and debate. Critics of the investigation have argued that a special counsel should not have been appointed, nor should the investigation have been pursued after the Justice Department learned who leaked Ms. Plame’s name to columnist Robert Novak. Furthermore, the critics point out that neither Mr. Libby nor anyone else has been charged with violating the Intelligence Identities Protection Act or the Espionage Act, which were the original subjects of the investigation. Finally, critics say the punishment does not fit the crime: Mr. Libby was a first-time offender with years of exceptional public service and was handed a harsh sentence based in part on allegations never presented to the jury.

Others point out that a jury of citizens weighed all the evidence and listened to all the testimony and found Mr. Libby guilty of perjury and obstructing justice. They argue, correctly, that our entire system of justice relies on people telling the truth. And if a person does not tell the truth, particularly if he serves in government and holds the public trust, he must be held accountable. They say that had Mr. Libby only told the truth, he would have never been indicted in the first place.

Both critics and defenders of this investigation have made important points. I have made my own evaluation. In preparing for the decision I am announcing today, I have carefully weighed these arguments and the circumstances surrounding this case.

Mr. Libby was sentenced to thirty months of prison, two years of probation, and a $250,000 fine. In making the sentencing decision, the district court rejected the advice of the probation office, which recommended a lesser sentence and the consideration of factors that could have led to a sentence of home confinement or probation.

I respect the jury’s verdict. But I have concluded that the prison sentence given to Mr. Libby is excessive. Therefore, I am commuting the portion of Mr. Libby’s sentence that required him to spend thirty months in prison.

My decision to commute his prison sentence leaves in place a harsh punishment for Mr. Libby. The reputation he gained through his years of public service and professional work in the legal community is forever damaged. His wife and young children have also suffered immensely. He will remain on probation.The significant fines imposed by the judge will remain in effect. The consequences of his felony conviction on his former life as a lawyer, public servant, and private citizen will be long-lasting.

The Constitution gives the President the power of clemency to be used when he deems it to be warranted. It is my judgment that a commutation of the prison term in Mr. Libby’s case is an appropriate exercise of this power.

Recommended viewing:

Mr. President, it’s time for you to choose.

Do you prefer plagues of locusts?

And she cast a spell to bring down the Emperor and his works

Former Deputy Secretary of Interior J. Steven Griles

Paul Kiel at TPMmuckraker:

The AP has reported that “federal prosecutors will seek no more than a 10-month prison sentence for Griles – the minimum they could seek under sentencing guidelines – but they will agree to let him serve half that in home confinement.”

A half dollar, a half dollar, a penny and two bits.

When in danger or in doubt, run in circles, scream and shout.

If you take responsibility, you must resign.

Hat-tip Shakes for the video. Now John Edwards has called for Gonzales’ resignation as well. One more point for John Edwards. I wish I could make a stronger recommendation but I won’t be able to do so until I know where he stands on medical cannabis.

Related post:

Update: Even more, and the hits will keep on coming.

Update 2: The next installment, like I said.

Checkmate

Placing it under the direction of the secretary of the treasury, the congress gave authority to the secret service to protect the president, the vice president and their immediate families.

For the president and spouse, this protection is for life.

Where they want to go to serve their life sentence is up to them. It is already done.

If you think they will be happy and welcome in any part of this country, you are mistaken. Among their most ardent supporters, there is no sympathy for a failure. He will be forgotten by them and brushed off as yesterday’s news.

What further trials will do is elucidate the facts of what happened, and how, so that we can learn to prevent it ever happening again.

Read the rest of this entry »

The man who will fall forever

Comma Karma.

And welcome d r i f t g l a s s to the blogroll. Along with Spocko’s Brain and some others that I’ve added recently and neglected to mention.

Music is language.

What have you done?

Tomorrow is Eid ul-Adha, the Islamic day of the sacrifice feast. And CNN is reporting that Saddam Hussein has been hanged on the very eve.

Don’t know how to stop?

With comment

Press release. Copied in full because it deserves to be read.

On Tuesday December 12th the largest single marijuana cultivation bust in the history of the DEA was dismissed in the 9th circuit courts by Judge Meredith Patel. Judge Patel ordered that all evidence and information taken from and used against Charles Edward “Eddy” Lepp in the 2004 Raid of Lepp’s home, ministry and garden (better known as Eddy’s Medicinal Gardens and Multi-Denominational Ministry of Cannabis and Rastafari) be suppressed due to the illegal service of warrants. The raid conducted in August of 2004 was a considerably large one. The DEA confiscated 32,524 plants on Lepp’s 20+ acre home and ministry taking a total of two days and using members of the local law enforcement and Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger’s Elite National Guard Wolf Team. The DEA estimated it to be an 80 million dollar bust calling it the most sophisticated cultivation they had ever seen.

Judge Patel has called for a Franks hearing on January 9th 2007 at 9:30am about the warrant from the 05 raid on Lepp’s home and ministry. At this time they will hear testimony from witnesses for both the prosecution and the defense to determine the validity of the warrant and the information used to attain it. It is the hope of the defense to prove once again the criminal behavior of the DEA by the attainment of yet another illegal warrant. This hearing is open to the public and is on the 19th floor of the Federal Court Building in San Francisco at 450 Golden Gate Ave.

Check Eddy’s Medicinal Gardens for more information on this case, updates on the next court date and to read the current court documents from this case which will be posted very soon. You may contact Lepp at 707-275-8879.

His name is not remembered.

How earlier people went extinct.

Don’t eat people.

“I give up, I give up, you used to be a regular anthrophagi. If this crazy idealistic idea of yours was to catch on, I just dunno where we would all be. Just about ruin our entire internal economy. Fortunately, I suppose it’s catching on isn’t really very likely — why, you might just as well going around saying ‘Don’t fight people,’ for example…”

Shame on Orenthal James Simpson.

Stop accepting his money. He cannot buy anything with his dirty money now. He will have to rely on good will to support himself from now on, and he won’t have a lot of that to start with, so had better get started.

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