Tuesday :: November 07, 2023

Election Day in America 2023

We get the Government we elect.

Please don't forget to vote.

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Tuesday :: October 31, 2023

Happy Halloween and Open Thread

Happy Halloween to all of you who just love, love, love this holiday. If you costumed up as a real person or character, please let us know who you chose.

For any of you who went trick or treating, let us know if you got your favorite candy and what it is. And if you put a "no candy here" sign on your front door, let us know that, too.

I think it's good to put a little merriment in the air for one night -- we could all use a night's relief from the horrible suffering, cruelty and death we're watching and reading about 24/7 in the Middle East. May the war be over soon.

This is an open thread, all topics welcome.

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Wednesday :: October 25, 2023

Trump Former Legal Advisor Jenna Ellis Pleads to Felony in GA Case

Former Trump legal advisor Jenna Ellis pleaded guilty in Georgia yesterday to a felony count of aiding and abetting false writings or statements. The RICO charge against her will be dismissed. She was sentenced, by agreement, to five years of probation. The Associated Press described Ellis' role in Trump's 2020 election campaign:

Ellis was a leading voice in the Trump campaign’s efforts to overturn the 2020 election, appearing frequently on television and conservative media to tell lies about widespread fraud that did not occur and spread misinformation and conspiracy theories.

More about the Georgia plea below. But first, Ellis also holds a Colorado law license. In March, 2023, she was publicly ensured by the Colorado Office of Attorney Regulation Counsel for promoting falsehoods about the validity of the 2020 election results. [More...]

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Tuesday :: October 24, 2023

Michael Cohen Testifies in Trump's NY Civil Fraud Trial

Michael Cohen testified against Donald Trump today in the state AG civil fraud case. The complaint in the case is here.

As expected, Cohen testified Trump purposefully and arbitrarily inflated the worth of his assets. It reminds me of a "paint by numbers" art set, with Trump Org. assets as the painted objects.

“I was tasked by Mr. Trump to increase the total assets based upon a number that he arbitrarily elected,” Mr. Cohen testified, saying that it was his responsibility to “increase those assets in order to achieve the number.”


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Wednesday :: October 11, 2023

Republicans Nominate Steve Scalise for House Speaker

CNN reports that Republicans have nominated LA Congressman Steve Scalise to replace McCarthy as Speaker of the House. His success is not guaranteed as a majority of the House will need to vote for him.

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Saturday :: October 07, 2023

Hamas Attacks Israel, Israel Says It Is At War

Hamas today launched the biggest strike against Israel since the 1973 Yom Kippur war -- and maybe since 1948. Israel has responded, saying "We are at War."

Some guests on CNN said this is a massive failure of intelligence by Israel. Others said because the Palestinians don't use cell phones and have gone off the electronic grid to avoid being tracked, Israel has never been able to conduct surveillance inside Gaza. That sounds like a weak explanation to me. What value is their intelligence if it can't detect imminent danger from its enemies?

Hamas must have been planning this strike for months, or even longer. It clearly wasn't a "fly by the seat of your pants" kind of attack. [More...]

Hamas sent 150 rockets just to Tel Aviv. CNN said 200 Israelis were killed in the Hamas strike.

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Friday :: September 29, 2023

Friday Open Thread

It's time for a new open thread. In non-Trump news:

  • Sen. Diane Feinstein has died at age 91.
  • El Chapo's youngest son, Ovidio Guzman, has been extradited to Chicago, charged with many crimes, related to cocaine and meth. It's the same 2009 case that began with Vicente Zambada-Niebla, the son of El Mayo, Ismael Zambada-Garcia, who along with El Chapo, led the Sinaloa cartel for many years. Ovidio is charged in the 12th Superseding Indictment in the case. He's pleaded not guilty and is represented by Jeffrey Lichtman, the New York lawyer who was the lead lawyer for El Chapo at his trial, and who then represented El Chapo's wife Emma, who is already done with her prison sentence and back in Mexico with her daughters.
  • The Washington Post reports Yiddish is making a comeback. I only know a few words, since no one in my household spoke it, but here's a phrase I never heard before: "zolst vaksn tzibbeles im pipik" which translates to: "You should grow onions in your belly button".
    It would make a great ending to any post about Donald Trump and his supporters.

This is an open thread, all topics welcome.

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Thursday :: September 28, 2023

The Trumps' New York Fraud Case: Trial on Monday?

A state appeals court in New York denied a request by the Trumps to continue the civil fraud trial set to begin Monday. The allegations include that Trump and Trump International and at least two of his children fraudulently lied to lenders and insurers by overvaluing their assets by billions of dollars. The original Complaint is here.

Trump has likely lost the case already, given the Court's grant of summary judgment on several counts last week. The judge also imposed monetary sanctions on his lawyers, for repeatedly making arguments it and higher courts had ruled frivolous. [More...]

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Wednesday :: September 27, 2023

Hunter Biden Sues Rudy Giuliani

Hunter Biden yesterday sued Rudy Guiliani and his companies and a variety of "John Does" for violations of the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act.

In the lawsuit, filed in the Central District of California, the younger Biden says that Giuliani and his former lawyer Robert Costello had spent years “hacking into, tampering with, manipulating, copying, disseminating, and generally obsessing over data that they were given that was taken or stolen from” his devices.

The basis for the claims includes Giuliani and Costello separately bragging about how they did it on podcasts and in newspaper articles. The Complaint is here.

Just another episode of "Rudy, How Low Can You Go?

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Tuesday :: September 12, 2023

Mark Meadows Loses Motion to Move GA Case to Federal Court

Former Trump Chief of Staff Mark Meadows has lost his motion to move the Georgia state criminal case against him to federal court.

"The court finds that the color of the Office of the White House Chief of Staff did not include working with or working for the Trump campaign, except for simply coordinating the president's schedule, traveling with the president to his campaign events, and redirecting communications to the campaign."

Meadows has filed an emergency motion to appeal to the 11th Circuit. It is available here.

The Judges 49 page ruling is here. [More...]

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Tuesday :: September 05, 2023

Labor Day Open Thread

Every Labor Day, since 2007 I post the same photo. It is a sculpture on a Labor Union memorial walking trail in downtown Omaha. I was in Omaha a lot during 2006-7 due to a drug case there that I was defending. Every morning before court or going to the jail to see my detained client, I'd walk the trail, stopping to read all the placards under each signpost and when I got to the sculputre, I would just stand in awe.

The sculpture is huge, 30 feet wide by 40 feet tall. Here is a photo of it from the web page of the artist who created it, Matthew Plazcek. It is called "Labor Monument".

This massive design featuring five larger-than-life bronze sculptures depicts the dignity, inspiration and dedication of the American work force.

Next is Labor Day music. We have a rich history of protest songs but the one that resonates with me the most on Labor Day wasn't even written by an American. [More...]

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Thursday :: August 24, 2023

Atlanta: Donald Trump Hires New Lead Lawyer

Donald Trump has shaken up his legal team, hiring one of the best trial lawyers in Georgia to be his lead lawyer.

Steven Sadow is absolutely top-notch. This case is also right up his alley.

I haven't spoken to Trump's former lawyer, Drew Findling, in a long time, but I hope he feels relieved. Drew gives his all to his clients, the famous the not-so-famous, and and to NACDL. After 30 plus years, he still has fun at work every day and despite his famous clients, he is still down-to-earth...no pretense, just a neighborhood-kind of guy. [More...]

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