The Pardons Commence, & Not Just For Thanksgiving Turkeys

Scepticalscribe

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Just saw - as breaking news in the Guardian, while I was reading Mr Biden's (sane, sensible, sympathetic, empathetic) Thanksgiving remarks, that, in addition to having pardoned a turkey or two earlier this week, in a lacklustre event, Mr Trump has now embarked upon the predicted path of issuing more pardons, this time to those who tripped over inconvenient laws while serving him.

Thus, Mr Trump has pardoned Michael Flynn, his former national security adviser, who had admitted lying to the FBI, and who had been charged as a result of Mr Mueller's investigation.

And, on the topic of Mr Biden's remarks: Sane, sensible, empathic, sympathy, finding the right words and the right tone, offering decent (and, I don't doubt, competent, leadership, free from coarseness, cruelty and corruption), leadership, a framework of language and a direction for the future.

What a relief; what a pleasure, what a guilty insane joy that someone is capable of uttering and giving voice to what people want to hear, need to hear and have long yearned to hear.
 
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And, Mr Trump is, of course, such a spiteful and jealous little shit (I meant bat droppings, horse manure and other animal refuse) that he would want to grab - or seize - the world's headlines on an evening when many have applauded - and greeted with relived approval and quiet approbation - Mr Biden's sane, sensible, thoughtful and deeply felt remarks, the kind of remarks that a genuine leader offers his people in such circumstances, and at such a time, offering hope, while not yet understating the changes and difficulties that still lie ahead - with his crass announcement that General Flynn will receive (or can expect to receive) a pardon.

For that pathetic and insecure and ignoble excuse of a miserable creature, it is all about the addiction of drama and headlines and media exposure.
 

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I can’t wait for Trump to be totally gone. I can’t wait to find out who he’ll pardon next.
Absolutely agreed.

It is so, so typical of him, narcissistic, nasty, needy; pardoning someone whom he fired for lying, what disgusting dysfunction, - you fire him for lying, because you are throwing him under the proverbial bus, yet, now, you pardon him for that very act, sending a signal that mendacity and corruption and cruelty will be rewarded, just as you are shown up for the miserable specimen - totally lacking in leadership qualities or generosity of vision - you are, when your successor makes a sane, sensible, sympathetic speech, offering leadership and hope leavened by a balanced reckoning with reality.

And now, how characteristically petty, pathetic and jealous - to do so just as news media confirm that Mr Biden's Thanksgiving remarks have been greeted with approval and relief, while yours are the more usual rancorous and self-obsessed deranged delusion.
 

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Remember Michael Flynn confessed, so there is no justification other than Donald Trump is a reckless, despicable, immoral, corrupt, excuse for a human being handing out favors to his loyal crook friends.
Yes, he is.

Two things - well three - strike me as interesting, and worth noting: Firstly, Mr Trump has pardoned General Flynn; this suggests to me that at the level of osmosis - and dawning belated realisation (the TV channels daring to cover other news stories, such as Mr Biden's appointments) - that Mr Trump, at the subterranean burrow in what passes for his mind - has accepted, not so much his defeat, as the fact that he has not been reelected to office.

And secondly, of course, is that fact that Mr Trump's ego probably couldn't handle the positive coverage Mr Biden received this evening (does anyone think that Mr Biden would have been obliged to utter these words - or the TV channels and media cover them - if adequate, adequate, not even basically competent let alone outstanding - leadership had been given on the issue of Covid-19 by Mr Trump?) and so had to contrive to snatch, seize, or "grab" - a favourite verb of his - the headlines, and the pardon promised to General Flynn has achieved that aim.

And thirdly, well, there is the fact that General Flynn actually confessed.

It need hardy be said - well, it does bear saying - that Mr Trump could not summon a soupçon of sympathy for the families of the more than a quarter of a million people who have died from Covid-19, not a syllable of sympathy could he summon, but yes, he could pardon someone who had lied to the FBI, and, in his warped moral universe, expect gratitude for so doing.
 
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SuperMatt

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Yes, he is.

Two things - well three - strike me as interesting, and worth noting: Firstly, Mr Trump has pardoned General Flynn; this suggests to me that at the level of osmosis - and dawning belated realisation (the TV channels daring to cover other news stories, such as Mr Biden's appointments) - that Mr Trump, at the subterranean burrow in what passes for his mind - has accepted, not so much his defeat, as the fact that he has not been reelected to office.

And secondly, of course, is that fact that Mr Trump's ego probably couldn't handle the positive coverage Mr Biden received this evening (does anyone think that Mr Biden would have been obliged to utter these words - or the TV channels and media cover them - if adequate, adequate, not even basically competent let alone outstanding - leadership had been given on the issue of Covid-19 by Mr Trump?) and so had to contrive to snatch, seize, or "grab" - a favourite verb of his - the headlines, and the pardon promised to General Flynn has achieved that aim.

And thirdly, well, there is the fact that General Flynn actually confessed.

It need hardy be said - well, it does bear saying - that Mr Trump could not summon a soupçon of sympathy for the families of the more than a quarter of a million people who have died from Covid-19, not a syllable of sympathy could he summon, but yes, he could pardon someone who had lied to the FBI, and, in his warped moral universe, expect gratitude for so doing.
We still detain those seeking asylum with the justification that they will skip their asylum hearings and hide somewhere in America, never to leave. The evidence shows that hardly ever happens, but who cares? Let’s waste massive amounts of money imprisoning them for no good reason other than to be cruel. And let‘s pardon ACTUAL CRIMINALS instead. This orange stain cannot be scrubbed out of DC fast enough!
 

lizkat

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Wonder if Trump will issue what are called pre-emptive or prospective pardons to people like Bill Barr or to Don Jr., Jared, Ivanka, et al., who might otherwise face federal charges in the future for assorted behavior during Trump's tenure in office.

That was essentially what Ford did when he granted Nixon "a full, free, and absolute pardon. . . for all offenses against the United States which he . . . has committed or may have committed or taken part in during the period from January 20, 1969 through August 9, 1974."

As for anything criminal that may have occurred in the 2016 campaign or the transition prior to Trump's inauguration --anything that Mueller flagged but elected not to pursue for whatever indicated reason at that time-- seems like Trump could not pardon anyone there since he wasn't President yet.

And of course the $64k question, could Trump pardoning himself for anything during his term in office, could that actually stick?

None of this helps Trump out of his own legal problems in New York State though. There are a raft of financial, tax and other suits pending his arrival back at status of private citizen. SDNY and NY AG will need new revolving doors and elevators for the crush of lawyers. Do we think Trump's fans have racked up enough donations to cover all that?
 

Edd

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I figure Trump looks at the pardons like $ in the bank. Only a sucker wouldn’t cash in those bad boys so that he could potentially benefit later. And, these pardons have a shelf life.
 

JayMysteri0

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So this is the part that will fascinate me. Unless one intends to only stay in that bubble world of far right conservatism, how does one explain to anyone NOT in that bubble what kind of individual you were in politics. If you gain the stain of a pardon on your 'life scorecard', a pardon that the likes of Stone, Bannon, Manafort, whoever else may get, doesn't that say quite a bit about you?

I mean there's guilt by association, then there is this.

Who the F' wants to deal with these people who will be painted with a virtual scarlet letter that scream "DO NOT TRUST"?

If you were truly honest, why would you need a pardon?
 

thekev

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It's weird that presidential pardons are actually allowed without congressional approval, in cases where there is a clear conflict of interest. In Trump's case, he both pardons direct allies and campaign staff while encouraging investigation of political rivals. He shouldn't have the ability to influence either outcome due to his own involvement.

Wonder if Trump will issue what are called pre-emptive or prospective pardons to people like Bill Barr or to Don Jr., Jared, Ivanka, et al., who might otherwise face federal charges in the future for assorted behavior during Trump's tenure in office.

That was essentially what Ford did when he granted Nixon "a full, free, and absolute pardon. . . for all offenses against the United States which he . . . has committed or may have committed or taken part in during the period from January 20, 1969 through August 9, 1974."

There are a lot of ridiculous pardons. Ford, Bush Sr. on Iran Contra, some that escape me with Clinton. Personally I hope this drags Trump, his family, and all of his enablers down. I'm not that optimistic though.

If you were truly honest, why would you need a pardon?

Even if you're innocent, legal fees can add up. There's that.
 

Yoused

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And of course the $64k question, could Trump pardoning himself for anything during his term in office, could that actually stick?
That is a difficult question. Over a hundred years ago, SCotUS affirmed that accepting a pardon is equivalent to admitting guilt. If Kumquat were to issue himself a blanket pardon such as Ford bestowed on Nixon, that would stain every order and action that he has signed off on. Everything he has done is therewith subject to summary reversal sans cause. Which, of course, would encompass the pardon issuance itself, so it becomes a paradox.
 

Huntn

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It's weird that presidential pardons are actually allowed without congressional approval, in cases where there is a clear conflict of interest. In Trump's case, he both pardons direct allies and campaign staff while encouraging investigation of political rivals. He shouldn't have the ability to influence either outcome due to his own involvement.



There are a lot of ridiculous pardons. Ford, Bush Sr. on Iran Contra, some that escape me with Clinton. Personally I hope this drags Trump, his family, and all of his enablers down. I'm not that optimistic though.



Even if you're innocent, legal fees can add up. There's that.
The President’s Pardoning abilities will never be looked at in the same way, delivering for your personal heist crew after they can been caught doing your bidding and then pardoning yourself (he WILL pardon himself) so with a divided Congress the President is truly above the law at least Federal law and I am disgusted.

We have never seen this kind of treason and obstruction of justice before, from giving Russia a pass, to trashing the Federal Government on the way out the door. Pardoning his crooks is the icing on Donny’s cake, this power to pardon must be reigned in. He’s made a complete mockery of democratic leadership, but doing us a back handed favor by illustrating that the President has way too much power when a Shit Bag is running the show.

As far as prosecuting a sitting President I understand the nature of politics with half the Congress willing to prosecute you for made up BS and the other half with justified reasons, the political nature of the body is a nightmare and the Achilles Heal of our democracy when we install losers, crooks, hyper partisans who have zero regard for orderly conduct, just want to win, and when in charge of Congress can break the rules as they see fit to serve themselves. Hell, we as a society can’t even decide what a crook is. Exhibit 1: 70 million votes for Mr. Delinquent. I think we are fucked.

There is one possible silver lining, The Head a crook can’t pardon himself from State Laws and I pray that New York State delivers, dropping the hammer on this POS.

 
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lizkat

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The silence from the "party of law & order" is deafening. It's not surprising though. Republicans are the biggest hypocrites next to Catholics.

Republicans are practically frozen right now, not wanting to do or say something that may later be summarized (appropriately or not) by media or Democrats as "the thing that handed the two Georgia Senate seats to Biden."

So like the rest of us, the GOP now mostly just gawks at The Don doing what he always does, which is think about himself while waving off caution lights and pre-empting some of those by tweeting first and letting aides try to clean up behind him. I can see him tweeting pardons someone in the WH said "don't do this they're not going to take it anyway". He'll do it to see if dangling it overrides that person's own legal counsel's advice or his own considered judgment that maybe shouldn't accept a pardon.

And Dems? All presidents make some pardons that anyone might question. But Trump will probably trump everyone's past lists by time he's done trying to seal lips and paperwork that might damage him. Surely he and his prospective targets there have lawyers who are reminding about the downside of accepting a pardon... including loss of immunity if prosecutors care to pursue a matter later on by going after another figure in the same set of events.
 

Huntn

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Republicans are practically frozen right now, not wanting to do or say something that may later be summarized (appropriately or not) by media or Democrats as "the thing that handed the two Georgia Senate seats to Biden."

So like the rest of us, the GOP now mostly just gawks at The Don doing what he always does, which is think about himself while waving off caution lights and pre-empting some of those by tweeting first and letting aides try to clean up behind him. I can see him tweeting pardons someone in the WH said "don't do this they're not going to take it anyway". He'll do it to see if dangling it overrides that person's own legal counsel's advice or his own considered judgment that maybe shouldn't accept a pardon.

And Dems? All presidents make some pardons that anyone might question. But Trump will probably trump everyone's past lists by time he's done trying to seal lips and paperwork that might damage him. Surely he and his prospective targets there have lawyers who are reminding about the downside of accepting a pardon... including loss of immunity if prosecutors care to pursue a matter later on by going after another figure in the same set of events.
The power to pardon must be based on individual responsibility, so after we have seen what a irresponsible crook does, we can question should the President have this power? And then we can ponder how many idiots walk among us, that took us to this place.

Maybe people around the globe are this stupid, or is the US suffering from a prevalent mental disorder labeled TDS, for so many of us to break bad, or is it better described as gullible, selfish, and stupid?

This election has shaken me and we are on shaky ground. Some substantial group of people live in a fantasy land of their own making and are no better than sheep, helped by shit heads like Trump. They can’t be bothered with warming temps, melting glaciers, rising oceans, it’s a liberal plot to take something from them, no different really from being asked to alter their routines to get a grip on COVID-19, making me wear a mask and avoiding large groups is a violation of my liberty to be STUPID!

As you can tell, this all disgusts me and at this grumpy stage in my life I pragmatically ask,
Does the human race deserve to succeed, and be stewards of the Earth?

Some people can’t see a path beyond their own selfishness, but when it’s based on fantasies, unrealistic expectations, and distrust, comes the real harm. I’ll argue this is all humans to different degrees. Some of us can see better than others and not all of us are sheep waiting to be sheered.

And for myself, someone who is not wealthy, but lives in relative comfort, I imagine a system where basically everyone can live in comfort and have the opportunities to explore their potentials.
 

SuperMatt

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The power to pardon must be based on individual responsibility, so after we have seen what a irresponsible crook does, we can question should the President have this power? And then we can ponder how many idiots walk among us, that took us to this place.

Maybe people around the globe are this stupid, or is the US suffering from a prevalent mental disorder labeled TDS, for so many of us to break bad, or is it better described as gullible, selfish, and stupid?

This election has shaken me and we are on shaky ground. Some substantial group of people live in a fantasy land of their own making and are no better than sheep, helped by shit heads like Trump. They can’t be bothered with warming temps, melting glaciers, rising oceans, it’s a liberal plot to take something from them, no different really from being asked to alter their routines to get a grip on COVID-19, making me wear a mask and avoiding large groups is a violation of my liberty to be STUPID!

As you can tell, this all disgusts me and at this grumpy stage in my life I pragmatically ask,
Does the human race deserve to succeed, and be stewards of the Earth?

Some people can’t see a path beyond their own selfishness, but when it’s based on fantasies, unrealistic expectations, and distrust, comes the real harm. I’ll argue this is all humans to different degrees. Some of us can see better than others and not all of us are sheep waiting to be sheered.

And for myself, someone who is not wealthy, but lives in relative comfort, I imagine a system where basically everyone can live in comfort and have the opportunities to explore their potentials.
If we make the planet uninhabitable by humans, we will die out and stop polluting it, and other forms of life will thrive in our absence. Idiots who complain “haha why are you hugging a tree or trying to save the planet?” ... don’t realize that we’re actually working to preserve the future of our species.
 

iMi

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If we make the planet uninhabitable by humans, we will die out and stop polluting it, and other forms of life will thrive in our absence. Idiots who complain “haha why are you hugging a tree or trying to save the planet?” ... don’t realize that we’re actually working to preserve the future of our species.

I often point out the fallacy of saying we have to “save the planet.” The planet will be fine. It has been fine for billions of years. The question is do we want to be around for much longer or do we destroy our own habitat, die off and clear the way for other species to fill the gap over the millions of years that follow after humanity is gone.
 

Yoused

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I often point out the fallacy of saying we have to “save the planet.” The planet will be fine. It has been fine for billions of years. The question is do we want to be around for much longer or do we destroy our own habitat, die off and clear the way for other species to fill the gap over the millions of years that follow after humanity is gone.

We are a fungus. A writhing mass of parasitism. Mother Earth is all itchy from the yeast infection all over her surface and will almost certainly be glad to cleanse herself of our budding billions. My brother says that if he had a vial of something that, upon release, would render all humans infertile, that thing would be open so fast. I can see his point.
 
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