May 8, 2014

"[T]he larger danger is giving government an expanded role in uprooting all forms of perceived corruption which may result in corruption of the First Amendment itself."

That a quote from Judge Rudolph Randa ends the The Wall Street Journal's editorial "Political Speech Wins in Wisconsin/A federal judge rebukes prosecutors trying to silence conservatives."

Notably, the editors connect the John Doe investigation of conservative groups to the IRS targeting of conservative groups. In both instances, we see how "campaign-finance laws have become a liberal weapon to silence political opponents" and how "fighting the risk of corruption from 'dark money' in politics... done in secret and unrestrained by Constitutional guardrails, have become far more politically corrupting."

27 comments:

Big Mike said...

So obviously true it borders on being a tautology.

Carol said...

This sounds like the "dark money" brouhaha the left is trying to brew up in Montana. It's just another coordinated effort.

There's just no originality anymore.

Illuninati said...

"Whether or not they ever brought charges, they also knew their probe would effectively shut down center-right spending as Mr. Walker and Republicans try to win re-election this year."

Lefties are totalitarians. Their new technique is to cheat in elections. Shutting down free speech is just that - cheating. It does not matter if the process is fair so long as they win. The "win" provides them with the patina of legitimacy they need to consolidate their own power and wealth.

Original Mike said...

"Notably, the editors connect the John Doe investigation of conservative groups to the IRS targeting of conservative groups. In both instances, we see how "campaign-finance laws have become a liberal weapon to silence political opponents" and how "fighting the risk of corruption from 'dark money' in politics... done in secret and unrestrained by Constitutional guardrails, have become far more politically corrupting.""

Exactamundo.

Beta Rube said...

The machinery of government at all levels, including huge education and legal bureaucracies are more and more the provenance of the left. That they re being used to circumvent democracy is obvious.

What is also obvious is that the ostensible defenders of civil liberties on the left don't give a damn if it serves their political ends.

chickenlittle said...

An "expanded role in fighting corruption" belongs to bloggers and independent news sources -- they just haven't found a way to monetize it yet. The government has that little kink worked out.

RecChief said...

speaking fo dark money, how about that leftist dark money meeting in chicago that included not just leftist billionaires but the CWP as well?

Also, an article by Dan Henninger

Tank said...

I feel like I'm living in John Galt's world sometimes.

RecChief said...

Their new technique is to cheat in elections.

New? heck my grandfather is a New Deal Democrat and he swears that Joe Kennedy cheated in Chicago to deliver the presidency to his son.

Drago said...

Beta Rube: "What is also obvious is that the ostensible defenders of civil liberties on the left don't give a damn if it serves their political ends."

Fen's Law.

Again and again and again.

Brennan said...

I'm glad that Mr. O'Keefe is flexing his civil rights. More Americans should do this in the face of state usurpation of their rights. Presuming the state always has the best interests of the citizens as their top priority is a dangerous one.

garage mahal said...

1. John Doe II is being lead by a Republican who said he voted for Walker.

2. Three Republican DA's from 3 counties are helping in the investigation.

3. The reason there is a special prosecutor and three DA's involved is because our Republican Attorney General refused to represent the State.

great Unknown said...

And, of course, the corruption in the Circuit Court, which just overruled Judge Randa and suspended the injunction.

Curious George said...

B-b-b-but secret routers! Koch Brothers!

ROUTERS!!!!!

traditionalguy said...

North Korea comes here: Regulate their internet!Make all education a Common Core Curriculum with home schooling forbidden . Make electricity too expensive to use.

The USA is under attack from North Korean ideals.

CWJ said...

Beta Rube wrote -

"The machinery of government at all levels, including huge education and legal bureaucracies are more and more the provenance of the left."

What a surprise that the party of government and the ideology of social control through government should be those who become entrenched in government over time.

The "more and more" is the demoralizing part of this quote. It implicitly recognizes that there is no turning back.

The most often used metaphor for political change over time is a pendulum. This is reassuring but false. The better metaphor is a rachet.

K in Colorado said...

I'm not one for crazy off the wall predictions or conspiracy theories, but I fear that our civil society and equal protection under the law is becoming a thing of the past. Consider the following: the IRS scandal, Harry Reid blaming the Koch brother for anything and everything while speaking in the well of the Senate, various states going after right-leaning groups for the sole reason they want them silenced during an election period, our Department of Justice deciding on their own which laws are constitutional or not (and thus what they will/will not enforce), and lastly the dominate media which ignores all of this because its not the type of speech they support.

Most of my immediate family (uncles, aunts, cousins included) are all hard core union democrats, and all of them voted for Obama in both elections. What I'm hearing now from them is that the effects of Obamacare and the IRS scandal has them very concerned. Both my mother and brother say they will not vote for any Democrat for national office this year or the 2016 presidential election.

Bruce Hayden said...

This sounds like the "dark money" brouhaha the left is trying to brew up in Montana. It's just another coordinated effort.

Exactly my thoughts this morning after reading this article in the Missoulan: ‘Dark money’ hypocrisy

Dark money is apparently money from independent groups that back conservative causes and candidates, but ignores the often much larger sums spent by the left. Here is part of the article:

But that’s probably not in the cards, so let’s take a snapshot of who’s spending the “dark money” in Montana. During the 2012 election cycle, independent expenditures supporting liberal candidates and causes outpaced those of conservatives by an order of magnitude: $4.3 million to $336,000. So much for the vast right-wing conspiracy. Sure, there are all kinds of other direct and indirect political expenditures, but if it’s “dark money” critics want to focus on, all they really have to do is look in the mirror.

In truth, national political agendas are increasingly driving political activism and spending in Montana – both on the right and left. With federal laws, regulations and spending impacting more of our everyday lives, virtually every issue in the political world has become a national issue. Obamacare dictates the insurance you can buy. Dodd-Frank regulates your banking options. The Education Department decides what your kids need to know. The list goes on. Every aspect of our lives is increasingly coming under D.C. control, which means national interests have a stake in every state election. And those interests on the left side of the spectrum are pouring resources into Montana affinity groups where they can get a big bang for their buck.


So, you now have ads back in CO from an "independent" left leaning group, with apparently some Steyer money, running constantly tarring the Republican candidate as extreme, and the much smaller ad buy buy for the very effective "White Ad" having been funded by the evil Koch brothers. It is somehow evil that conservative independent groups fund campaigning against Dems, but fine if leftist groups spend even more against Republicans.

MadisonMan said...

Now that Randa's order has been stayed, I would like to see what evidence has been procured by the Grand Jury. I think it would make a fascinating book.

Randa did order the destruction of all evidence gathered. That's a huge mistake IMO -- because if you want to find evidence of misconduct on the part of the prosecutor (arguably something that may have happened), how can you do that without the evidence gathered?

Or is the evidence-destruction Randa ordered a crumb thrown to the DA? Look, you can't do anything else with this, but I'm going to destroy everything you collected so no one can successfully charge you with malfeasance.

Connie said...

I am surprised that the methods of the investigation get little comment: "Defendants instigated a secret John Doe investigation replete with armed raids on homes to collect evidence that would support their criminal prosecution."

These pre-dawn raids, complete with banks of floodlights and sufficient officers not only to conduct the search, but to restrain the occupants from contacting counsel, are particularly vile, and demonstrate the attitude and effort devoted to this "enforcement." While the "what" and the "why" rightfully deserve comment, we should not lose sight of how forcefully the government machinery was brought to bear in support of this righteous cause.

SteveR said...

There are plenty that go to the extreme of total mistrust and conspiracy theories but its not that sinister. Power placed into the hands of people who don't have responsibility creates problems and there is a natural need to seek greater power as the government gets larger and provides more services. But people aren't getting more responsible.

Patrick said...

People are misreading the "evidence destruction." The Judge ordered the return of all original documents to the owners. He ordered the Defendants to destroy only the copies. The truth is not quite so dramatic.

RecChief said...

The reason there is a special prosecutor and three DA's involved is because our Republican Attorney General refused to represent the State.

Assuming this is true, you're saying an AG who refuses to enforce a law warrants a special prosecutor?

Have you discussed this with Eric Holder? Are you sure that's the position you want to take?

Beta Rube said...

The score:
Conservative groups stymied and harassed: 28

Liberal groups: zero

All is well in Garagestan.

Curious George said...

garage mahal said...
1. John Doe II is being lead by a Republican who said he voted for Walker.

2. Three Republican DA's from 3 counties are helping in the investigation.

3. The reason there is a special prosecutor and three DA's involved is because our Republican Attorney General refused to represent the State.

1. Bullshit. Its' being led by DA Chisolm, a Democrat. He initiated the whole thing. Strike 1.

2. Bullshit. The investigation is being led and handled by Chisholm and his minions. The three GOP DA's were nor listed in the recent suit, and were not part of the appeal. The GOP DA's are invloved only because the proble included "suspects" AKA victims in their jurisdictions. Strike 2.

3. Bullshit The investigation was already four months old before they went to Van Hollen. He refused to take part because it would have appeared to be a conflict of interest:"I am concerned about the perception that my office cannot act impartially ... particularly if the investigation does not result in enforcement action," which of course in almost TWO YEARS has not. Strike 3.

Grab some bench Corky.

dbp said...

Refusal to represent the state and refusal to bring charges are two very different things.

Kirk Parker said...

"The USA is under attack from North Korean ideals."

Every day is a day closer to the end of Claire Wolfe's "awkward period". I weep for this country, and what my children and grandchildren will receive of the remnants of it.



"The most often used metaphor for political change over time is a pendulum. This is reassuring but false. The better metaphor is a ratchet."

How about a lit fuse?