Friday, July 20, 2018

College Destruction of Black Students


By Walter E. Williams


Amy Wax, a University of Pennsylvania law professor, has come under attack and scathing criticism because she dared criticize the school's racial preferences program. 

In an interview with Brown University economist Glenn Loury, discussing affirmative action, Wax mentioned how racial preferences hinder the ability of blacks to succeed academically by admitting them into schools at which they are in over their heads academically. 

At UPenn's seventh-ranked law school, Wax said, she doesn't think that she has ever seen a black law student graduate in the top quarter of his class, and "rarely" is a black student in the top half.

That got her into deep trouble. 

UPenn students and faculty members charged her with racism. UPenn Law School Dean Ted Ruger stripped Wax of her duty of teaching her mandatory first-year class on civil procedures. 

I'm guessing that UPenn's law faculty members know Wax's statement is true but think it was something best left unsaid in today's racially charged climate.

Ruger might have refuted Wax's claim. He surely has access to student records. He might have listed the number of black law students who were valedictorians and graduated in the top 10 percent of their class. He rightfully chose not to -- so as to not provide evidence for Wax's claim.

One study suggests that Wax is absolutely right about academic mismatch.

In the early 1990s, the Law School Admission Council collected 27,000 law student records, representing nearly 90 percent of accredited law schools. 

The study found that after the first year, 51 percent of black law students ranked in the bottom tenth of their class, compared with 5 percent of white students. Two-thirds of black students were in the bottom fifth of their class. Only 10 percent of blacks were in the top half of their class. Twenty-two percent of black students in the LSAC database hadn't passed the bar exam after five attempts, compared with 3 percent of white test takers.

The University of Pennsylvania controversy highlights something very important to black people and the nation. The K-12 education that most blacks receive is grossly fraudulent.

Most predominately black schools are costly yet grossly inferior to predominately white schools and are in cities where blacks hold considerable political power, such as Baltimore, Detroit, Chicago and Philadelphia. 

In these and other cities, it's not uncommon for there to be high schools where less than 17 percent of the students test proficient in reading, and often not a single student in such schools tests proficient in math. Nonetheless, many receive high school diplomas.

It's inconceivable that college administrators are unaware that they are admitting students who are ill-prepared and have difficulty performing at the college level. 

There's no way that four or five years of college can repair the academic damage done to black students throughout their 13 years of primary and secondary education. Partial proof is black student performance at the postgraduate level, such as in law school. 

Their disadvantage is exaggerated when they are admitted to prestigious Ivy League law schools. 

It's as if you asked a trainer to teach you how to box and the first fight he got you was with Anthony Joshua or Floyd Mayweather. You might have the potential to ultimately be a good boxer, but you're going to get your brains beaten out before you learn how to bob and weave.

The fact that black students have low class rankings at such high-powered law schools as UPenn doesn't mean that they are stupid or uneducable. 

It means that they've been admitted to schools where they are in over their heads.

To admit these students makes white liberals feel better about themselves. It also helps support the jobs of black and white university personnel in charge of diversity and inclusion. 

The question for black people is whether we can afford to have the best of our youngsters demeaned, degraded and possibly destroyed to make white liberals feel better about themselves. 

You might ask, "Williams, without affirmative action, what would the University of Pennsylvania Law School do about diversity and inclusion?" 

I'd say that's UPenn's problem.

Thursday, July 19, 2018

Democrats' New Strzok Doctrine Allows Bigoted Speech


By Clarence McKee | Townhall

Deputy Assistant FBI Director Peter Strzok waits to testify before a joint committee hearing of the House Judiciary and Oversight and Government Reform committees in the Rayburn House Office Building on Capitol Hill July 12, 2018, in Washington, D.C. (Mark Wilson/Getty Images)

Thanks to disgraced FBI Agent Peter Strzok and his paramour, FBI colleague Lisa Page, Congressional Democrats and many in the media have given us a new standard and guideline on how to judge hateful comments against groups of Americans by those in positions of power and influence: the “Strzok Doctrine.”

According to that school of thought, as long as hateful comments and bias do not influence conduct or the outcome of an investigation, then the speaker or purveyor of the hate is free to express anything, regardless how vile, against any person or group including those he or she might be investigating, work with, or over whom they have authority.

I will keep that in mind the next time a Democratic member of Congress, state or local politician, or civil rights leader yells racism or discrimination when some public or private sector administrator or law enforcement official makes or texts some racist, sexist, or homophobic message.

Thanks to Congressional Democrats, black and Hispanics included, bigots now have the new “Strzok Doctrine”: “All I did was express my personal opinion which is my right. It had no impact on my decision or conduct toward that person, those people, the outcome of the investigation or how I run the office or agency.”

So, what if a policeman texts a derogatory slur about blacks, Hispanics, or gays to a colleague or hangs a noose in the locker room as long as it doesn’t impact how he treats the black, Hispanic, or gay citizens he is sworn to serve and protect?

At least Lois Lerner did not put her negative views against conservative groups in writing before she had the IRS go after them because she despised their political views.

In Miami-Dade County, Florida, a Circuit court judge has resigned from the bench rather than face possible expulsion after coming under attack for making racial slurs against blacks.

As the Chair of the Judicial Qualifications Commission concluded: “The use of racially derogatory and demeaning language to describe litigants, criminal defendants or members of the public, even behind closed doors or during off-the- record conversations, erodes public confidence in a fair and impartial judiciary.”

But, apparently, Democrats defending Strzok’s use of derogatory and demeaning language would disagree if the language did not impact the Judge’s decisions.

To phrase it another way, should a black or Jewish criminal defendant be confident if he is told that the KKK members of a jury can put their bias against blacks and Jews aside and reach a fair verdict? Under the Strzok Doctrine, a Klan juror’s bigotry is acceptable if it doesn’t impact his decision on guilt or innocence.

I am amazed how Democrats on the House Judiciary and Oversight Committees were so insensitive to these realities. They defended Strzok and his more-than-a colleague friend Lisa Page saying that their hateful biased comments against candidate and President-Elect Trump and his supporters had no impact on the outcome of their investigations.

It was embarrassing watching them, especially the black members, treating Strzok like a long-lost hero in the war against Trump as they created a new standard of turning a blind eye to slurs against a group of people just because of their political beliefs.

Looking like elephants in a circus parade grabbing each other’s tails with their trunks, Democrats rallied to his defense in an orchestrated effort to create confusion and attack the president.

They became his personal cheering and hit squad even applauding his answers. One Texas Congressman, Steve Cohen, went so far as to suggest that he deserved the “Purple Heart” for which he was strongly criticized by veterans.

But notice what Democrats did not say. I may have missed it, but I do not recall any of the Democrats on the Committees or in Congress criticizing Strzok’s comments that he could "SMELL the Trump support" at a Southern Virginia Walmart or describing Trump supporters as “ignorant hillbillies.”

That’s not surprising. As we have seen from Hillary’s comments about the “deplorables,” it is apparent that much of the left, most liberal Democrats, and their media elite friends look down their noses at Trump supporters and hardworking Americans who are not among the coastal elites. Just imagine what Strzok, Page, and their Democrat and media friends say about black Trump supporters.

I would wager that their tunes would change if a Republican official had said that he got a strong “Obama Smell” when he went to a black restaurant or drove through a black neighborhood. Would they have the same forgiving attitude?

History and reality have shown blacks that racism and bigotry in the hearts and minds of policy and decision makers usually results in racist, bigoted, and discriminatory outcomes.

Unfortunately, Democrats and their media allies are too busy engaging in a lovefest with Strzok to see the parallels between his hateful comments and those of people who utter racial, sexual, or homophobic slurs against other groups of Americans.

Under the Democrats’ and Trump Resistance’s new “Strzok Doctrine,” one is free to make hateful and bigoted comments as long as they do not have any proven impact on outcomes.

Clarence V. McKee is president of McKee Communications, Inc., a government, political, and media relations consulting firm in Florida. He held several positions in the Reagan administration as well as in the Reagan presidential campaigns.

_______________

The Speech Trump Should Give

By William McGurn


President Donald Trump during a news conference after talks with Russian President Vladimir Putin in Helsinki, July 16. PHOTO: METZEL MIKHAIL/ZUMA PRESS

‘I order declassified all FBI and Justice material Congress has subpoenaed.’


My fellow citizens: More than 20 months have passed since you elected me your president. Unfortunately, America remains polarized by that election, which was marked by Russian interference, FBI investigations into both candidates or campaigns, and questions whether some powerful federal agencies themselves tried to influence the outcome.

We still have more questions than answers. Tonight I address you from the Oval Office to tell you the step I am now taking to ensure that the American people will finally get the complete story.

At the heart of our democratic system is accountability. Inspectors general and special counsels and criminal prosecutions may all have a role here. Still, under our Constitution the primary accountability is to the American people via their elected representatives.

Unfortunately Congress has been stymied in its subpoenas for documents that would fill the remaining holes in the story. These holes include what really prompted the FBI to begin its investigation of my campaign, as well as how parts of our government used a dossier full of salacious material that was never verified and was produced and paid for by my rival’s campaign. Even where Congress has access to key information—for example, the application for the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court warrant to spy on an American connected with my campaign—lawmakers cannot make the information public because it is classified.

I am moved to act tonight in good part by last week’s spectacle on Capitol Hill featuring former FBI romantic partners Lisa Page and Peter Strzok. Ms. Page at first defied a congressional subpoena to testify. I will not comment on Mr. Strzok’s testimony. More telling was the reason Mr. Strzok gave for not answering most of the most critical questions Congress put to him: The FBI had instructed him not to.

As a result, we still do not know when the FBI investigation into my campaign started. I would have preferred Congress to receive the information it needs through the normal give and take of oversight. But Mr. Strzok’s public testimony suggests that our law-enforcement and intelligence agencies still have not gotten the message that they are not “independent” of congressional oversight. Other evidence this message has not been received includes their slow-walking of information under subpoena and their redaction of vital details in the documents they have turned over.

My order tonight reminds the FBI and Justice Department, along with every other part of the executive branch, that they are not independent of the president. The authority to classify and declassify information is part of a president’s constitutional powers as commander in chief. In this capacity, I am ordering the declassification of all material subpoenaed by Congress regarding Russia and collusion and possible FBI or Justice Department abuses.

I also am ordering the director of national intelligence to work with Congress to develop a process that fully protects the sources and methods used to gather information even as it aims for maximum transparency. Where the director determines information must be redacted, he will let the appropriate committee chairmen and leaders in Congress see it to ensure nothing is being hidden to cover up wrongdoing or embarrassment. 

Where bad behavior is found, it will be punished, even if it includes members of my own team. And those in the executive branch who fail to carry out my order will be dismissed and replaced.

I have tremendous respect for the men and women of the FBI. But a small group of their leaders, concentrated in the bureau’s Washington headquarters and believing themselves unanswerable to authority, have given the bureau a black eye. These includes a former deputy director of the FBI, Andrew McCabe, who may face criminal charges for lying to investigators under oath. The purpose of my order is to get the full story out—as opposed to the selective and self-serving leaks we have seen so far, including those by then-FBI Director James Comey himself.

My order is also limited. Nothing in it prevents Congress from exercising its own constitutional powers to impeach officials it finds in dereliction, or to hold them in contempt until they testify. Nor does my order impinge in any way on special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation.

The principle here should be clear. Under our Constitution, the unelected parts of government are accountable to the elected—not vice versa.

Far too often in America’s history, we have seen how “national security” has been invoked by those trying to keep the public from finding out about their own malfeasance. So when people criticize this order, ask them this: Why don’t you want to know? And why are you so determined to keep Congress from finding out?

I myself do not know what is in all these documents. But I am confident in my order because it returns responsibility for imposing consequences and accountability where it rightly belongs: with you, the American people.

Thank you, and God bless America.

___________________


The Trump/Putin Summit Is the Worst Thing Ever Until the Next Worst Thing Ever

By Kurt Schlichter | Townhall


Here’s a secret everyone knows: this Trump/Russia/Treason thing is nonsense. 

The Russians will do whatever they can to destabilize our country, and have been trying since long before Teddy Kennedy actually did collude with the Reds against Ronald Reagan. 

Of course they want to destabilize us. They’re Russians

But now we are getting a ration of insanity about it from a bunch of people who only discovered that Ivan is bad news about the same time Stumbles McMyTurn lost. 

When they are yelling that Donald Trump’s press conference was (Pearl Harbor + 9/11) x 1,000,000, forget about raising any legit grievances with Trump’s performance. We’re not playing their game.

Why bother with reason? 

It’s kind of hard to have a rational discussion with people screaming “traitor” and “treason,” especially when they have been screaming “traitor” and “treason” for the last 18 months and we’ve seen no traitoring or treasoning. 

But the facts don’t deter them. 

Trump’s clearly Putin’s puppet because he just pounded on NATO to carry its own ruck and increase defense spending to counter…wait for it…Russia.

Apparently strengthening NATO is playing right into Putin’s cunning claws. 

And giving grief to the krauts for doing a gas pipeline deal with the Bear…that was horrible too, for some reason. 

Giving lethal aid to Ukraine, cruise missiling Russia’s pal Assad, and whacking 200 Russian mercs in Syria…none of that matters because none of it supports the official narrative. 

Trump’s actions are indisputably exponentially harsher on Russia than anything Obama did, but citing that evidence and those facts is now itself evidence of collusion.

My favorite part of the day is going on social media and having froth-lipped adherents of the party that eagerly signed on with the KGB’s 1980s nuclear freeze campaign telling me, a guy who was then serving in Germany on the west side of the Wall waiting for the Reds to invade, that I’m a traitor. 

This argument is not compelling. 

All this kind of babble does is annoy me and millions of other people who refuse to freak out at the behest of establishment hacks eager to regain their lost power.

It’s a power play. 

Certainly, there are people spouting this stuff who are stupid enough to believe it. 

After all, idiots are a key Democrat constituency. 

My congressdork, Ted Lieu, probably believes everything he breathlessly tweets, but in his defense he’s incredibly foolish. 

Yet many of these weasels know full well that what they are saying is ridiculous. 

They don’t care. 

Let’s assume Donald Trump is a secret Putin pawn – is there anyone who can count to 20 with his shoes on who thinks Mike Pompeo, John Bolton, or Mad Dog Mattis would tolerate that?

No, there isn’t. 

Well, Ted Lieu probably does, but he’s the kind of guy who keeps magic beans sellers in business.

Any legit criticism of Trump’s policies is swamped by the insanity. 

But that’s part of the plan. 

They want people so outraged they can’t, or won’t, think. 

This is a cynical ploy to ramp things up to a fever pitch and panic the weakhearts. 

They seek to split the GOP between Trump supporters and the Flake Fredocon Faction of simpering sissies so they can retake power. 

The establishment was always going to dogpile Trump no matter what he did in Europe. 

That he gave them some ammo with what he concedes was loose talk followed by a walk-back only made their job easier. 

But the fix was already in.

Will it resonate with regular Americans? 

You know, the ones who aren’t watching MSNBC lunatics shouting that Trump is literally Hitler, just like W, McCain and Romney were literally Hitler? 

Normals are simply not reading 37-tweet threads explaining how pretty soon Trump’s going to make sure there are spetsnaz troops with AK-47s on every street corner, forcing our country into a Red Dawn scenario where #TheResistance shouts “Avenge me! Avenge me!” and fights back against the invaders, presumably with vicious tweets and gyno-beanies.

It will not resonate, any more than the last hundred WORST THING EVERs resonated. 

And why should it? 

After years of hearing how Trump is all four Horsemen of the Apocalypse, it’s hard to make him the fifth as well with some new atrocity that, upon sober reflection, is not exactly earth-shakingly atrocious.

Why would the establishment believe it had any credibility anyway? 

As my upcoming book Militant Normals: How Regular Americans Are Rebelling Against the Elite to Reclaim Our Democracy explains, Donald Trump is in office because the establishment failed. 

And it is probably treason to point this out, because everything is treason now, but Putin was in office for a long time before Trump beat Felonia Milhous von Pantsuit, and the stuff he's done lately pales in comparison to the stuff he did back then. 

Putin’s a thug and an enemy, but Normal people quite naturally wonder why Trump is solely to blame for the boil Bush II and Obama both let fester.

The establishment cries, “Horrors! Trump refuses to uncritically accept the word of the intelligence community.” 

But isn’t that the same IC that provided the 411 that caused these same screaming weenies to howl “Bush lied, people died!” 

Just following the narrative will give you whiplash. 

And isn’t it the same IC whose head honchos have been actively plotting Trump’s overthrow since Hillary sowed what she didn’t reap in Wisconsin?

Normal people notice this stuff.

Trump needs to do a better job of distinguishing the good, solid people in the IC and FBI from the hacks, corruptocrats, and liberal flunkies infesting them, but then Normal people understand that there are a significant number of hacks, corruptocrats, and liberal flunkies infesting them. 

The idea that these institutions are beyond criticism is not going to fly, at least not in the flyover states.

This is where one would normally find some cliché about Trump being his own worst enemy. 

No. 

He makes mistakes but he is not his own worst enemy. 

His worst enemy is the establishment. 

Period. 

But this nonsense is not going to distract or deter him any more than a dozen other hyped outrages did. 

America has priced in Trump being Trump. 

And Normals know damn well that all this treason garbage is just that – garbage. 

It’s a grift designed to sucker them into returning to power the people who screwed up this country so much that the Normals turned to Donald Trump as their solution

Trump is not going anywhere, no matter how often and loudly they cry “Traitor!”

Tuesday, July 17, 2018

TRUMP CALLS OFF COLD WAR II


By Pat Buchanan


Beginning his joint press conference with Vladimir Putin, President Trump declared that U.S. relations with Russia have “never been worse.”

He then added pointedly, that just changed “about four hours ago.”

It certainly did. With his remarks in Helsinki and at the NATO summit in Brussels, Trump has signaled a historic shift in U.S. foreign policy that may determine the future of this nation and the fate of his presidency.

He has rejected the fundamental premises of American foreign policy since the end of the Cold War and blamed our wretched relations with Russia not on Vladimir Putin, but squarely on the U.S. establishment.

In a tweet prior to the meeting, Trump indicted the elites of both parties: “Our relationship with Russia has NEVER been worse thanks to many years of U.S. foolishness and stupidity and now, the Rigged Witch Hunt!”

Trump thereby repudiated the records and agendas of the neocons and their liberal interventionist allies, as well as the archipelago of War Party think tanks beavering away inside the Beltway.

Looking back over the week, from Brussels to Britain to Helsinki, Trump’s message has been clear, consistent and startling.

NATO is obsolete. European allies have freeloaded off U.S. defense while rolling up huge trade surpluses at our expense. Those days are over.

Europeans are going to stop stealing our markets and start paying for their own defense.

And there will be no Cold War II.

We are not going to let Putin’s annexation of Crimea or aid to pro-Russian rebels in Ukraine prevent us from working on a rapprochement and a partnership with him, Trump is saying. 

We are going to negotiate arms treaties and talk out our differences as Ronald Reagan did with Mikhail Gorbachev.

Helsinki showed that Trump meant what he said when he declared repeatedly, “Peace with Russia is a good thing, not a bad thing.”

On Syria, Trump indicated that he and Putin are working with Bibi Netanyahu, who wants all Iranian forces and Iran-backed militias kept far from the Golan Heights. 

As for U.S. troops in Syria, says Trump, they will be coming out after ISIS is crushed, and we are 98 percent there.

That is another underlying message here: America is coming home from foreign wars and will be shedding foreign commitments.

Both before and after the Trump-Putin meeting, the cable news coverage was as hostile and hateful toward the president as any this writer has ever seen. The media may not be the “enemy of the people” Trump says they are, but many are implacable enemies of this president.

Some wanted Trump to emulate Nikita Khrushchev, who blew up the Paris summit in May 1960 over a failed U.S. intelligence operation – the U-2 spy plane shot down over the Urals just weeks earlier.

Khrushchev had demanded that Ike apologize. Ike refused, and Khrushchev exploded. Some media seemed to be hoping for just such a confrontation.

When Trump spoke of the “foolishness and stupidity” of the U.S. foreign policy establishment that contributed to this era of animosity in U.S.-Russia relations, what might he have had in mind?

Was it the U.S. provocatively moving NATO into Russia’s front yard after the collapse of the USSR?

Was it the U.S. invasion of Iraq to strip Saddam Hussein of weapons of mass destruction he did not have that plunged us into endless wars of the Middle East?

Was it U.S. support of Syrian rebels determined to oust Bashar Assad, leading to ISIS intervention and a seven-year civil war with half a million dead, a war which Putin eventually entered to save his Syrian ally?

Was it George W. Bush’s abrogation of Richard Nixon’s ABM treaty and drive for a missile defense that caused Putin to break out of the Reagan INF treaty and start deploying cruise missiles to counter it?

Was it U.S. complicity in the Kiev coup that ousted the elected pro-Russian regime that caused Putin to seize Crimea to hold onto Russia’s Black Sea naval base at Sevastopol?

Many Putin actions we condemn were reactions to what we did.

Russia annexed Crimea bloodlessly. But did not the U.S. bomb Serbia for 78 days to force Belgrade to surrender her cradle province of Kosovo?

How was that more moral than what Putin did in Crimea?

If Russian military intelligence hacked into the emails of the DNC, exposing how they stuck it to Bernie Sanders, Trump says he did not collude in it. Is there, after two years, any proof that he did?

Trump insists Russian meddling had no effect on the outcome in 2016 and he is not going to allow media obsession with Russiagate to interfere with establishing better relations.

Former CIA Director John Brennan rages that, “Donald Trump’s press conference performance in Helsinki … was … treasonous. … He is wholly in the pocket of Putin. Republican Patriots: Where are you???”

Well, as Patrick Henry said long ago, “If this be treason, make the most of it!”

Monday, July 16, 2018

President Trump and Russia's Putin Just Held a Historic Press Conference, Here's What They Said


By Katie Pavlich | Townhall


President Donald Trump and Russian President Vladimir Putin wrapped up a historic meeting and press conference in Helsinki, Finland Monday afternoon and addressed a number of pressing issues facing both countries. 

"Today’s meeting is only the beginning of a longer process, but we’ve taken the first steps toward a brighter future and one with a strong dialogue and a lot of thought," President Trump said.

Both leaders started their remarks at the lectern by saying their discussions went well, although serious differences remain. Here are the major topics they covered. 

Russia meddling in the 2016 presidential election: 

"During today’s meeting, I addressed directly with President Putin the issue of Russian interference in our elections," President Trump said. 

Putin flat out denied his government has ever attempted to influence a U.S. election, despite the Department of Justice indicting a dozen Russian military operatives last week for hacking state election systems, the DNC and stealing sensitive digital documents for publication. 

Russian President Vladimir Putin, after summit with @POTUS, again denies meddling in U.S. elections.
— Fox News (@FoxNews) July 16, 2018

When asked whether he believes the U.S. intelligence community or Putin on the issue of Russian interference, President Trump gave Putin credibility by accepting his denial and failed to accept the U.S. assessment.

@POTUS: “President Putin was extremely strong and powerful in his denial today.” 
— Fox News (@FoxNews) July 16, 2018

President Trump's tweets about the U.S.-Russia relationship:

President Trump was asked about this tweet, which he sent this morning. 

Our relationship with Russia has NEVER been worse thanks to many years of U.S. foolishness and stupidity and now, the Rigged Witch Hunt!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) July 16, 2018

“I hold both countries responsible. I think that the United States has been foolish, I think we’ve all been foolish. We should have had this dialogue a long time ago," he said. "I think we’re all to blame. I think that the United States now has stepped forward.”

Robert Mueller's Special Counsel Probe:

President Trump was asked about Special Counsel Robert Mueller's investigation into the 2016 presidential election and said it has been terrible for the country. 

@POTUS: “There was no collusion at all.”
— Fox News (@FoxNews) July 16, 2018

When asked by a reporter if the Russian government had any salacious or damning information about President Trump, Putin laughed.

Syria: 

“Cooperation between our two countries has the potential to save hundreds of thousands of lives,” Trump said about the situation in Syria. 

Energy:

President Trump didn't call Putin an enemy, but rather a "good competitor"  in reference to energy issues in the region. He said there will be competition in the future over gas and oil pipelines in Europe.

Near the end of the press conference, Putin handed President Trump a soccer ball and said, "The ball is in your court." President Trump then threw it to first lady Melania Trump, who was sitting in the front row, and said it will be great for his son Barron.

You can watch the press conference in full below:

Joint Press Conference from Helsinki, Finland:
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) July 16, 2018


____________________

Mueller’s Politicized Indictment of Twelve Russian Intelligence Officers

By ANDREW C. MCCARTHY | National Review


If the idea was to give Vladimir Putin and his thug regime a new way to sabotage the United States, nice work.

So, is Russia now presumed innocent of hacking the 2016 election?
If not, it is difficult to understand any proper purpose served by Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s indictment of twelve military officers in the Kremlin’s intelligence services for doing what everybody in America already knew that they did, and has known since before Donald Trump took office — indeed, since before the 2016 election.

Make no mistake: This is nakedly politicized law enforcement. There is absolutely no chance any of the Russian officials charged will ever see the inside of an American courtroom. The indictment is a strictly political document by which the special counsel seeks to justify the existence of his superfluous investigation.

Oh, and by the way, the answer to the question posed above is, “Yes, it is now the official position of the United States that Russia gets our Constitution’s benefit of the doubt.” 

Here is Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein announcing the Friday the 13th indictment: “In our justice system, everyone who is charged with a crime is presumed innocent unless proven guilty.”

Of course, the indicted Russians are never going to be proven guilty — not in the courtroom sense Rosenstein was invoking.

As is so often the case in today’s politicized Justice Department, Rosenstein was trying to make a different political point. As he went on to note, if people whom we have formally charged are presumed innocent, then, a fortiori, people who have not been accused — implicitly, Rosenstein was talking about President Trump — must also be presumed innocent. 

But, see, you can’t make that point without stepping on the political purpose of Friday’s charade: We have taken the not only pointless but reckless step of indicting operatives of a hostile foreign power who cannot be prosecuted and whose schemes could easily have been exposed — and, in fact, have been exposed, multiple times — in public government reports.

So now, due-process rules oblige us to caution you that we must presume the Russians did not do what we have formally accused them of doing. They are entitled to that presumption unless and until we convict them in court, which is never going to happen.

Rosenstein made another telling remark at his big press conference. The Justice Department, he explained, will now “transition responsibility for this case to our Department’s National Security Division while we await the apprehension of the defendants.”

Now, stop giggling over that last part — the bit where we hold our breath until Russian dictator Vladimir Putin extradites his spies into the FBI’s waiting arms.

I’m talking about the first part: Mueller’s case, the definitive case about what Russia did to interfere in the 2016 election, is no longer Mueller’s case. 

It is being “transitioned” — i.e., buried — in the Justice Department unit that deals with counterintelligence matters that do not result in public trials.

This underscores what we have been arguing here since before Mueller was appointed: There was no need and no basis in federal regulations for a special counsel.

A special counsel is supposed to be appointed only when there are:

(a) a concrete factual basis to believe federally prosecutable crimes have been committed, calling for a criminal investigation, and

(b) a conflict of interest that prevents the Justice Department from conducting the criminal investigation.

As we’ve observed countless times, there was no basis for a criminal investigation of President Trump or the Trump campaign. 

The fact that Russia interfered in an American election — as it routinely does — never meant that the perceived beneficiary of the interference was criminally complicit in it. 

There is no known evidence that Trump-campaign officials had any involvement in hacking by the Russian intelligence services. 

Mueller’s new indictment powerfully suggests that this could not have happened — the Russians were expert in their cyberespionage tactics, they did not need anyone’s help, and they took pains to conceal their identity from everyone with whom they dealt.

Moreover, even though Trump-campaign officials have been charged with other crimes (having nothing to do with the 2016 election), and some of those Trump officials had “contacts” with Russians, Mueller has never charged one of them with a crime related to Russia’s espionage attack on the election.

Nor has he ever elicited from any defendant who pled guilty an admission of any such crime. 

The only known allegations of such a crime are contained in the unverified, Clinton-campaign-sponsored Steele dossier, and the Trump-campaign figures implicated in it have either not been charged at all (e.g., Carter Page, Michael Cohen), or not been charged with a “collusion” crime (Paul Manafort).

Thus, among the worst aspects of Mueller’s new indictment is its continuation of the Justice Department’s politicized perversion of its critical counterintelligence mission.

Lacking the requisite basis to conduct a criminal investigation, the Justice Department used its counterintelligence mission as a pretext for appointing a special counsel. 

This was grossly improper:

(1) Counterintelligence work, which is geared at thwarting the operations of hostile foreign powers, is not the prosecutor work of building criminal cases;

(2) not surprisingly, then, there is no authority in the regulations to assign a special counsel to a counterintelligence investigation; and

(3) because counterintelligence authorities do not afford Americans the due-process protections required in criminal investigations, the Justice Department is not permitted to use counterintelligence as a pretext for conducting what is actually an effort to build a criminal prosecution.

Now Mueller has taken the next logical wayward step: He has woven an indictment that can never be tried out of counterintelligence work against foreign governments that is not supposed to be the subject of criminal prosecution — i.e., the subject of public courtroom testing under due-process rules.

This is not the way counterintelligence is supposed to work. 

And the Justice Department knows it. 

That is why Mueller’s indictment will now be the property of DOJ’s National Security Division, the home of other non-prosecutable foreign counterintelligence work that is never intended to see the light of day in a public courtroom.

And why such an easy transition? 

Because there is no conflict of interest.

There never was. 

Russia’s interference in the 2016 election was never something that the Justice Department was unable to investigate in the normal course. 

In fact, for months, the Trump Justice Department was investigating it in the normal course, just as the Obama Justice Department had done. 

Then, President Trump fired FBI director James Comey. 

It was this event that prompted Rosenstein to appoint Mueller. 

We got a special counsel not because of Russia’s espionage or any evidence indicating actual Trump-campaign complicity in it; we got a special counsel because Rosenstein was deeply involved in Comey’s ouster and wanted to fend off Democratic attacks on him over it.

The only point of the new indictment is to justify Rosenstein’s decision and Mueller’s existence. 

Proponents of the unnecessary special counsel want to say, “See, we really needed this investigation.”

But that can be said with a straight face only if the goalposts are moved.

To be clear, we did need an FBI counterintelligence investigation of Russia’s espionage operation against the 2016 election, and we already had a quite aggressive one before Mueller came on the scene. 

But we would have needed a special-counsel investigation only if there had been a concrete factual basis to believe the Trump campaign conspired in Russia’s espionage operation against the 2016 election.

There never was. 

So now, the purported need for Mueller is being rationalized on two fictitious premises.

The first is that the new indictment shows we needed Mueller to get to the bottom of Russia’s perfidy. 

This is false: There is nothing new in Mueller’s indictment.

His participation was unnecessary to discover what our counterintelligence investigators have learned.

The intelligence they have gathered should not have been put in an indictment — aggression by hostile foreign powers is not a law-enforcement issue.

It is a mockery of the justice system to charge foreign aggressors and pretend we presume them innocent of their attacks against our country.

The second is that the number of indictments Mueller has generated proves that there were solid grounds to suspect Trump-campaign “collusion” in Russia’s election-meddling. 

The blatant, partisan dishonesty of this claim is best encapsulated in this passage from the Washington Post’s report on Mueller’s new indictment:

Mueller and a team of prosecutors have been working since May 2017 to determine whether any Trump associates conspired with Russia to interfere in the election. With the new indictment, his office has filed charges against 32 people on crimes including hacking, money laundering and lying to the FBI.

The Post goes on grudgingly to point out that 26 of the 32 charged are Russians “who are unlikely to ever be put on trial in the United States.” 

Unlikely? 

But the paper conveniently omits mention of the fact that none of the 32 have been charged with a Trump–Russia conspiracy to interfere in the election. That’s the only thing Mueller was needed for.

As I pointed out on Twitter over the weekend, besides the two-dozen-odd Kremlin operatives already charged, there are 144 million other people in Russia who will never see the inside of an American courtroom.

If Mueller indicts every one of them, his stats will look really impressive . . . and there will still be no Trump conspiracy against the election.

What there will be, though, is a new international order in which nation-states are encouraged to file criminal charges against each other’s officials for actions deemed to be provocative.

Or, more accurately, actions that can be exploited for domestic political purposes. 

Of all government officials in the world, American officials are the most active on the global stage — and that includes meddling in other countries’ elections.

I doubt our diplomats, intelligence operatives, elected officials, and citizens will much like living in the world Robert Mueller and Rod Rosenstein have given us. 

If the idea was to give Vladimir Putin and his thug regime a new way to sabotage the United States, nice work.

ANDREW C. MCCARTHY — Andrew C. McCarthy is a senior fellow at the National Review Institute and a contributing editor of National Review@andrewcmccarthy


https://www.nationalreview.com/2018/07/muellers-latest-indictments-russians-politicized-pointless/