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Profile Information

Gender: Male
Hometown: Nokomis, FL
Home country: US
Member since: Wed Nov 5, 2014, 01:58 AM
Number of posts: 27,669

About Me

Retired 3x, living comfortably on the Gulf Coast, biking, beachwalking, lifting free weights, eating mostly properly, keeping my mind active, in my seventh decade, intending to give Methuselah a run for the record...

Journal Archives

Horses can be tool users...

The care and feeding of a perjury trap...

Mueller should not get to decide whether Manafort is lying

Prosecutors call them cooperating witnesses. The rest of the criminal justice system calls them rats, snitches, chivatos, stool pigeons, informants and sapos, just to name a few of the terms. The federal criminal justice system is built on these witnesses. So long as they tell “the truth,” they receive enormous reductions in their sentences. In some cases, sentences for defendants convicted after trial are 500 percent longer than sentences received by those who plead and cooperate with the government.

So it’s no surprise that trials have dropped from almost 20 percent of all cases in the 1980s to less than 3 percent today (with most all the rest of the cases resolving in a plea). Like the days of Salem witches, even the innocent are racing to plead guilty and to tell the prosecutors what they want to hear in the hopes of avoiding monstrous sentences.

There are many fundamental problems with such a system. One such issue is demonstrated in the Paul Manafort case, where the prosecution team just filed a status report with the court explaining that they have concluded that Manafort is not fulfilling his end of the plea agreement because, they say, he has lied to them during interviews (or as they are called in the system, debriefings). Manafort has said he has answered all of their questions truthfully. This may or may not be true.

But who decides? Strangely, the Mueller team is the decisionmaker in whether Manafort is telling the truth. In the Manafort plea, just as with all other cooperation deals in the federal system, the government gets to decide unilaterally whether to ask for a sentencing reduction based in part on whether they believe Manafort is telling the truth. Manafort cannot himself file a sentencing reduction motion under the sentencing guidelines, and neither can the judge. The government and only the government is charged with evaluating whether Manafort has provided “substantial assistance in the form of truthful information.”

Defendants quickly learn what this really means: Tell the government lawyers what they believe the truth to be or get burned at the stake.

This is what is expected to qualify as providing substantial assistance. The “truthful information” must be the version of events that supports the government’s storyline.

Kasich: Midterm Turnout Suggests Opening for Independent Bid

Ohio Gov. John Kasich said Thursday while he remains undecided about another presidential run, the midterm election results could suggest a greater opening for an independent or third-party candidate.

Kasich made his second trip this year to New Hampshire, where he finished second in the state's leadoff Republican presidential primary in 2016.

"I'm encouraged every time I come back here," he told reporters in Concord before meeting with supporters. "I know everybody's wondering how I'm going to make a decision, when I'm going to make a decision. I don't know, but what's most important to me is that I can have a voice that can be a healing voice for the country."

Asked about his previous speculation about running as a third-party or independent, Kasich said all options remain on the table.

Sooooo, who would be cheering, "Run, John, RUN!"

Tryptophan.. it's not just for people...


Airline passengers share frustrations with shrinking bathrooms in funny social media pics

Passengers have begun complaining about the new toilets, and there are even fears their smaller size could lead to more air rage incidents.

American Airlines estimates adding extra seats could generate $500 million a year, and is beginning to use smaller bathrooms on its new Boeing 737 MAX aircraft.

The new toilets are 24.5 inches wide — 10 inches smaller than those on airline’s older 737 models — which allows 12 more passengers in the cabin.

The larger passenger will have to use only one cheek at a time and go twice to complete one movement. Crouching in the aisle may become an option with the airlines renting a blanket for $2 as a privacy screen and selling a large disposable plastic bowl for a fiver...

Dead people walking...

There is a one in a million lifetime risk of death from:

• Cancer if you smoke 1.4 cigarettes
• Cancer if you eat 100 charcoal broiled steaks
• Air pollution if you spend 2 days in New York City
• An accident if you drive 40 miles in a car
• An accident if you fly 2500 miles in a jet
• Drowning if you canoe for six minutes
• Cancer if you receive 10 mrem of radiation, which is equivalent to the dose of radiation received from two coast-to-coast, roundtrip, airline flights. To place that dose in context, the average person in the United States receives 360 mrem a year of radiation dose from natural sources.

Getting it right...

Look into the TV series, The Night Manager. IMDB rating of 88.2, Rotten Tomatoes Tomatometer...

... 90%. I'm in episode four using Amazon Prime via a ROKU...

A little travelling music!...

Seymour's pre-bedtime massage...

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