30th March 2012
Mark Steyn looks at the law.
From Conrad getting the “honest services” law reined in at the Supreme Court to the Hutaree sedition charges getting dismissed, determined defendants can still occasionally win against federal prosecutors, but in reality they always lose: the process is the punishment. The jury tossed out the feds’ case against a New Hampshire neighbor of mine in nothing flat, but by that time he’d lost his savings and his marriage and attempted suicide. Any fair-minded observer of US justice would conclude its excesses have thrown off the balance between defendant, prosecutor and judge.
Incidentally, I see the original Time story on the Hutaree militia is headlined “A New Name In American Paranoia“. But they weren’t paranoid, were they? They were convinced that one day the black helicopters would be hovering overhead. And one day they were. Or, actually, one night – in the wee small hours, descending from the skies with searchlights circling. Oh, and Humvees – just like in Waziristan. So Eric Holder proved their point. In Lenawee and Hillsdale counties, they still talk about it – and the general consensus is the pseudo-commandos of the federal constabulary looked way more ridiculous than the survivalist kooks.