World watch – Wednesday

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16 Comments

  1. Ivan Kinsman

     /  February 21, 2018

    This is an interesting initiative to offset the US pullout of the 2015 Paris agreement. Most Americans disagree with Trump’s decision and are motivated to make their own contribution to reducing AGW:

    https://trumpforest.com/science/

    • Alan Wilkinson

       /  February 21, 2018

      But can the Left cope with people making their own decisions?

      • Mefrostate

         /  February 21, 2018

        Tell you what, Alan. If these individuals manage the same volume of carbon reductions and the same financial contributions to the developing world promised by the US under Paris, then I’ll become a full-blooded libertarian. If they fail, you vote Green from now on.

        • Alan Wilkinson

           /  February 21, 2018

          Of course people volunteering their own money will never match the Left volunteering other peoples’ money, Mefro.

          • Mefrostate

             /  February 21, 2018

            Excellent point, and a strong argument for state intervention in matters where the private sector falls short, such as international co-operation on climate change. Thanks for the help!

            • Alan Wilkinson

               /  February 21, 2018

              Lefties never need any help to spend other people’s money.

            • Gezza

               /  February 21, 2018

              They do if the rich pricks don’t want to give any, Sir alan?

  2. Gezza

     /  February 21, 2018

  3. Joe Bloggs

     /  February 21, 2018

    I’d overlooked this little gem in Mueller’s indictment of the Russians last week…

    During the entire investigation, I’ve written or stated that “collusion” is not a crime. But now I’m persuaded that Mueller has legal precedent and probably sufficient facts to convert knowing collusion into a criminal conspiracy charge.

    [snip]

    Mueller has evidence to turn collusion into a conspiracy charge under 18 USC 371, and Mueller is using this approach in his indictments:
    “For purposes of Section 371 conspiracies to defraud the U.S., fraud has a different and broader meaning. In 1924 in Hammerschmidt v. United States the Supreme Court held that conspiracy to defraud the U.S. includes schemes “to interfere with or obstruct one of its lawful government functions by deceit, craft, or trickery, or at least by means that are dishonest.’’ A conspiracy to defraud the U.S. under 371 does not need to result in a loss of money or property by the federal government.”

    [snip]

    This development is very serious. Obviously, Mueller needs more evidence, but the indictment of 13 Russians contains both this conspiracy charge and facts that might lead a path towards indicting Trump officials and Cambridge Analytics officials. Certainly the obstruction charges just got a lot more potent now that we know of underlying concrete crimes.

    https://shugerblog.com/2018/02/20/mueller-may-now-have-enough-to-charge-collusion-as-criminal-conspiracy/

    Shugerman also comments on the detailed accounts in the indictments of identity theft and bank fraud:

    the details of identity theft and bank fraud. Those specific crimes are more concrete and more easily proven than violations of campaign finance law or election law, and that puts anyone who knowingly conspired with them in more serious legal jeopardy. These indictments do mention “unwitting” Americans, which seems exculpatory of the Trump campaign at this stage, but
    1) it is a more careful and professional way of phrasing an indictment at this stage,
    2) it is wise for Mueller and Rosenstein to avoid unnecessary politically contentious allegations now, and most importantly
    3) Mueller unsealed a guilty plea by a “witting” American co-conspirator on the same day, showing that there is more behind this indictment of Russians than innocent mistake.

    If this is the path Mueller is following then the implications are very serious as Shugerman says, because in a conspiracy case the offense is the agreement itself – the partnership in crime.

    A defendant must join the agreement with the intent to further its criminal objectives.

    But a defendant doesn’t have to personally commit the crime that is the object of the conspiracy to be charged. Because it’s a crime to conspire to help another person commit an offense even if you don’t commit it yourself.

    Nor does the conspiracy have to be successful. Conspiracy’s a separate offense independent of the underlying object of the conspiracy. If the crime you conspire to commit is never carried out, for whatever reason, you can still be prosecuted for the conspiracy itself.

    • Alan Wilkinson

       /  February 21, 2018

      Splendid. The Left have invented another thought crime. Well done Joe. Another triumph for socialist/fascism.

      • Joe Bloggs

         /  February 21, 2018

        grow up Alan.

        How is 18 USC 371 an invention of the Left? Why are laws against conspiracy a triumph for socialism and fascism?

        You’re just being silly now and you’re worthy of better than this response.

        • Alan Wilkinson

           /  February 21, 2018

          Conspiring to commit a crime that isn’t committed is obviously a thought crime. Equally, invoking this to punish those who seek to challenge or manipulate government functions is a triumph for socialist fascism. And of course it is the Left who are promoting this. Take a bow.

    • Gezza

       /  February 21, 2018

      Best thing to do is wait until the official investigation into these matters is completed & any indictments issued.

  4. Joe Bloggs

     /  February 21, 2018

    If you wrote a movie script about trumpworld you’d be laughed out of Hollywood

    A new dating site intended for Trump-admirers seeking other Trump-admirers for romance, Trump.Dating, up until the last few days featured the image of a convicted sex offender, Barrett Riddleberger, alongside his wife Jodi on its homepage, wearing his-and-hers hats reading “Trump” and “Make America Great Again.”

    https://www.motherjones.com/politics/2018/02/a-convicted-sex-offender-was-the-face-of-a-new-trump-dating-site/