Monday, October 31, 2016

Comey's Next Big Surprise?

Mrs. Wizard is an amazing, intelligent, beautiful person.  

Today, she was speculating that the reopened FBI investigation might actually work in Hillary's favor if the FBI does not come out with anything new before the election. Certainly, that's the aim of the well-orchestrated drumbeat of attacks leveled at FBI Director James Comey since the stunning revelation on Friday, October 29, that the investigation into HRC's emails was on again.

Image result for james comeyA fascinating timeline and description of the events leading up to Comey's decision is here.  

So what's next?  No one knows, not even your Wizard.  But, I have a few thoughts and a wish prediction as to what might happen.

Apparently, Director Comey was motivated to announce the investigation's reopening by (1) the appearance of new evidence, (2) his promise to Congress to do so if new evidence arose, and (3) the resignation letters piling up on his desk from FBI agents incensed by the failure to level charges against the Clinton crew.  

Now, he's being hammered by the entire liberal bench, going so far as to claim that he violated the Hatch Act, a nonsensical allegation.

Which brings us to the next big surprise.

Feeling besieged for only doing his job and in an effort to bolster public perception of his and the FBI's integrity, Comey holds a press conference or, better yet, arranges for another appearance before a Congressional committee, and says the following:

1.  He was ordered by Attorney General Loretta Lynch, presumably at the behest of President Obama, to derail the original investigation.  Since it was a close call, he reluctantly agreed.  Given recent events, he regrets that decision and the investigation should not have been closed.  He believes the orders were given for purely political reasons.

2.  He made a promise to Congress, and he is keeping it.  The discovery of 650,000 emails stored on a previously unknown device -- a device which Huma Abedin swore under oath did not exist -- made it imperative to reopen the investigation.  It is immaterial whether any of the emails were to or from Hillary; they could contain admissions by her closest confidante who would be an invaluable witness were she turn on the Democratic candidate.

3.  The disclosure that the woman married to the no. 2 man at the FBI, Andrew McCabe, had received nearly $500,000 in campaign funding from a PAC controlled by Terry McAuliffe, one of the Clintons' closest allies and a Clinton Foundation board member, cast a pall over the entire previous investigation that only a complete reexamination would dispel.

4.  In his view, there is substantial evidence that numerous individuals, including Huma and Hillary, lied to the FBI during the investigation.

Right now, Comey is untouchable.  He serves at the pleasure of the president, who wouldn't dare fire him.  (For all we know, Obama is enjoying watching Hillary twist in the wind.)  And, Comey would have no liability for his testimony -- witnesses are immune.

Just dreaming on a Monday morning.

Friday, May 27, 2016

Moving to New York City for my Health and Happiness

It looks like I may have to leave the Emerald City and head to the Big Apple if I want to be healthy and treated with deference.  Still, there may be a hiccup.

First, New York City is bound and determined to make people healthier.  From trying to ban Big Gulps and other large containers of delicious soda, the city has now moved on to salt.  If restaurant owners don't put little icons on their menus next to any salty items, they can be fined as much as $600.  Bad seasonings! Bad!

I just know the time is coming when the city will go after butter, and then it's on.  Oh yes, it's on.

Second, the city is going all out to make sure no one is discriminated against based on their gender identity, going so far as to list 31 different gender identities, just to make sure people are educated on these fast-growing segments of society.

And now, the hiccup.  I'm gender salted.  Salt is not just delicious, it's a necessity to make bland food edible and good food great.  And don't get me started on iodine!

So, on the one hand, the city wants to protect my gender expression, but at the same time stigmatizes the use of salt as unhealthy.  Unhealthy!  That's what they said about a lot of gender expressions that don't neatly conform to their cisgender normatives.

At some point, all these new regulations are bound to lead to conflict.  What if a gender salted person wants a salty cupcake that the baker won't provide for health reasons or to comply with a city ordinance.  Who gets prosecuted in that instance?

I should mention I am also devoted to Diet Coke - is that a subset of gender fluid?  I'm not sure, it's so difficult to keep up with all of the definitions.  So let's just call it gender DC.  When some surly waiter asks, "Is Pepsi okay," is that a violation, merely disrespect, or just poor restaurant management?

We didn't have these problems when Rudy was mayor.

For now, it's probably best to just stay here in the Emerald City, where we get up at 12 and start to work at 1, take an hour for lunch and then at 2 we're done.  

(Opens Diet Coke and bag of especially salty chips).  Ah, life is good.

Saturday, May 21, 2016

Could BARBRI or the DOJ Pass the Character and Fitness Requirements for Bar Admission?

Here in the Enchanted Mitten, new lawyers applying for admission to the Bar must demonstrate their character and fitness to practice law.  Many of them have taken the BARBRI prep course for the bar examination, and, presumably, some would like to work for the U.S. Department of Justice.

But, could BARBRI and the DOJ themselves pass the character and fitness requirement?  A couple of recent stories suggest they might have some difficulty.

BARBRI and a few law schools are being sued by another bar exam prep company, LLM Bar Exam LLC,  LLM alleges that by donations and gifts to the law schools and lucrative teaching contracts to the schools' faculty members, BARBRI is attempting to monopolize the bar prep market, with LLM being excluded from law school marketing and facilities.

Even worse than BARBRI's alleged conduct, lawyers from the U.S. Department of Justice were recently found to have misled a federal judge and then to have attempted to cover up their misrepresentations. The judge ordered lawyers representing the DOJ in 26 states to undergo annual ethics training, stating:
In fact, it is hard to imagine a more serious, more calculated plan of unethical conduct. There were over 100,000 instances of conduct contrary to counsel’s representations.
 There is a solution, of course, to all this widespread dishonesty.  Move to Wisconsin, where you can lie to your heart's content and still be admitted to the Bar.