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Ocelot II

Ocelot II's Journal
Ocelot II's Journal
January 14, 2024

Nixon resigned because he knew he was going to be impeached,

and he accepted Ford's pardon because he knew he was likely to be prosecuted. There was never any question about immunity at the time. Sometime later, in 1977, he said in an interview that when a president does something it's legal. Nobody ever actually believed that, though; and Nixon certainly didn't either. In fact, that statement was qualified as referring to acts taken for purposes of national security. Here's a transcript of that part of the interview:

Frost: So, what in a sense you’re saying is that there are certain situations and the Huston plan or that part of it was one of them where the president can decide that it’s in the best interest of the nation or something and do something illegal.

Nixon: Well, when the president does it … that means that it is not illegal.

Frost: By definition –

Nixon: Exactly … exactly… if the president … if, for example, the president approves something … approves an action, ah … because of the national security or in this case because of a threat to internal peace and order of, ah … ah … significant magnitude … then … the president’s decision in that instance is one, ah … that enables those who carry it out to carry it out without violating a law. Otherwise they’re in an impossible position.

Frost: So that the black-bag jobs that were authorized in the Huston plan … if they’d gone ahead, would have been made legal by your action?

Nixon: Well … I think that we would … I think that we’re splitting hairs here. Burglaries per se are illegal. Let’s begin with that proposition. Second, when a burglary, as you have described a black-bag job, ah … when a burglary, ah … is one that is undertaken because of an expressed policy decided by the president, ah … in the interests of the national security … or in the interests of domestic tranquility … ah … when those interests are very, very high … and when the device will be used in a very limited and cautious manner and responsible manner … when it is undertaken, then, then that means that what would otherwise be technically illegal does not subject those who engage in such activity to criminal prosecution. That’s the way I would put it. Now, that isn’t trying to split hairs … but I do not mean to suggest the president is above the law … what I am suggesting, however, what we have to understand, is, in wartime particularly, war abroad, and virtually revolution in certain concentrated areas at home, that a president does have under the Constitution extraordinary powers and must exert them with … as little as possible. . . .

So what Nixon was saying was that if actions that are ordinarily against the law are taken in the interests of national security or other national concerns, those actions should not result in prosecution. He added that he did "not mean to suggest the president is above the law," only that a president has "extraordinary powers" that can be used under certain circumstances to protect the national interest. This is not what Trump is claiming at all. Trump's argument is that a president can't be prosecuted at all for any crimes committed as president - including the murder of political opponents - unless he is first impeached and removed from office, which is ridiculous. Even Nixon didn't suggest anything like that.
September 19, 2023


AP - Former president Donald Trump was dragged by a large alligator into a water hazard near the 10th hole of one of the Doral Golf Resort's four courses, and apparently was mostly eaten. His partner, Senator Lindsey Graham, did not directly witness the attack, having obediently turned his back while Mr. Trump moved his ball, but he reported having seen a golf shoe disappear into the water along with the alligator's snout. Senator Graham stood by the edge of the water and squealed while a caddy poked ineffectually at the alligator with a nine-iron; subsequent rescue attempts recovered only a belt buckle, a red MAGA hat and shreds of a badly-soiled XXX pair of boxer shorts.

July 1, 2023

Lots of people got to exercise their middle fingers.

Loved the LOSER sign!

June 30, 2023

Things aren't just bad; they're *weird.*

I'm old. I've lived through - and remember well - Nixon, Reagan and Bush. They were bad presidents and many members of their administrations were bad; some even went to prison. These administrations were bad because they were dishonest, dumb and dangerous. At various times they lied to the public, implemented domestic and foreign policies that were harmful; some benefited corruptly and personally. But they were regular, normal bad, not weird bad. I couldn't stand Nixon, Reagan and Bush and their various loathsome minions because they were nasty, corrupt, dishonest and harmful, as politicians sometimes are and always have been, from time to time. But I never thought any of them were actually crazy. I never thought what was going on then was weird, the sort of weird that makes you go, How the fuck can this actually be happening?

And none of those administrations and presidents, as bad as they were, caused millions of people to go completely nuts, join a personality cult and start believing demonstrably mad things. Some believed stupid, unprovable things, like Saddam Hussein had WMDs, because they were lied to. But believing that thing was nothing like believing the government puts chemicals in the water that makes people turn gay or that Hillary Clinton was running a child abuse ring from the basement of a pizza parlor. There have always been goofy conspiracy theories but not ones that millions and millions of people actually believed. And TFG himself is a very weird guy, just apart from also being a very bad guy. Maybe it's the effect of social media, but I don't remember a time when bad was also really, really weird. Where did all this pathology come from?

June 30, 2023

Yup. There's not a damn thing we can do about the Supreme Court right now,

so all the wailing and gnashing of teeth and rending of clothing about their revanchist decisions is for naught. None of them will be impeached and it's doubtful that their ethical transgressions will be adequately dealt with. Elect Democrats at all levels and be sure there's one occupying the White House when the two oldest and worst of the not-so-Supremes finally go to their eternal reward. Elect Democratic dogcatchers, park board members, state representatives and senators; some of the most heinous fuckery arises at the local level, where any numpty wearing a beanie with a propeller can get elected to a school board or a city council by claiming that chemtrails and fluoride are polluting their precious bodily fluids and causing children to grow up to be communist drag queens. Best to spray for them while they are still larvae.

June 12, 2023

Pretty much. It's a lot harder to get away with really obvious racial bigotry any more;

you can't say "N-----" in public and you can't admit to hating Black people or Jews or members of non-white/non-Christian groups in polite company. So they had to find a new, more powerless minority to pick on, and why not LGBTQ people? They're "different" (just being different makes a person a potential target for hate no matter what the difference might be), and there's a sexual component that makes the haters uncomfortable. We can't have that, can we? And just think of the children! If a child reads a book about two boy penguins taking care of a chick, the child might turn out to be gay! If a child figures out that they are more comfortable living as the gender that they weren't born with and dressing accordingly, that's weird and it really means they are pretending to be girls so they can do icky things to the "real" girls in their school's bathrooms. Have I got that right?

What I think is really going on wrt trans-phobia is that RWingers, especially the fake Christians, have a very rigid view of gender (and everything else). You are either male or female, and between the two genders there's a vast chasm of behavior and appearance and roles. But gender is actually pretty fluid, and the hairy he-men of the GOP are horrified to think it might be possible for a person to consider themselves to be different from the God-created gender they were born with. For some reason this is terribly threatening. And drag is really scary because there are people who are actually men with actual penises who are dressing up as women, which is bad because women are weak and inferior and why would a man pretend to be one, even as a night club act? And if they read to children, those children will immediately start wearing false eyelashes and feather boas, and then what?

We're all performing our own drag, aren't we? We dress and behave in the way society expects us to. As a straight cis woman I don't have to wear makeup or earrings but I do because that's what we do. Drag bends expectations and that scares some people.

May 24, 2023

I have a theory about that letter, FWIW.

No lawyer, even one of TFG's sketchy mouthpieces, would write such a puerile, belligerent letter to the guy who's overseeing the prosecution of his client. What I suspect happened is something like this: TFG calls up the lawyer and says he wants a meeting with Garland. Lawyer says Garland probably won't do it because Jack Smith, the Special Counsel, is managing the case. TFG says he doesn't care, he wants the lawyer to send Garland a letter demanding a meeting, and he dictates the letter to the lawyer, insisting on the wording. And TFG wants a copy of the letter immediately, on the lawyer's letterhead. Lawyer rolls his eyes and has a secretary type it up as dictated and send a copy to TFG. Lawyer then either writes a polite, professional letter to Garland and/or Smith, requesting a conference to discuss the status of the case and does not send TFG a copy of this letter, or else he makes the request by phone so he can truthfully tell his client that he has contacted Garland. He suspects or knows that the letter TFG dictated will be posted on fake Twitter for the purpose of outraging and grifting the MAGAts but he's already sold his soul by agreeing to represent TFG in the first place, so he accepts the resulting humiliation as the cost of doing business. But the letter on TFG's fake Twitter was never sent to Garland at all.

So that's my theory and I'm sticking to it.

May 7, 2023

Bingo. Whatever bad shit England got up to in its history,

which is also our history, was the work of many people and institutions. England had had a parliament for centuries; following the house arrest, trial and execution of Charles I by the Parliament in 1649 (obviously he wasn't really in control of things at that point), there was an interregnum during which England, led by Oliver Cromwell, declared itself a republic. During this period Cromwell brutally conquered Ireland and invaded Scotland, then returned to England and dissolved Parliament. A reconstituted Parliament then declared Cromwell "Lord Protector for life." Under Cromwell's rule Britain continued the expansion of its empire. After his death, and notwithstanding his objections to monarchy, Cromwell was succeeded as Lord Protector by his son Richard. Richard had no power base in Parliament or the Army and was forced to resign in May 1659, ending the Protectorate. Concluding that the republic thing hadn't worked out so well after all, Parliament invited Charles II back from exile and restored him to the throne in 1660. He was succeeded by his brother James II, who was basically chased off the throne after constant battles with Parliament in the Glorious Revolution of 1688, and replaced by William of Orange and Mary. The Glorious Revolution established the primacy of parliamentary sovereignty.

English history consists of constant battles between forces of the monarchy, the church(es), and elected representatives. England hasn't had an absolute monarch since the early middle ages (if even then), as much as many of them wanted to be one, and to place all the evils of the empire on the shoulders of increasingly weak monarchs is to completely ignore or misunderstand this complex history. I am not advocating for monarchy; it's clearly an antiquated and unnecessary form of government that still survives only as a historical and symbolic relic. The monarchs of Britain and the other European countries that still have them are essentially powerless and ceremonial, serving only as titular heads of state, not heads of government. Any of those countries, all of which are also representative democracies, could abolish their monarchies through acts of their parliaments but so far they have chosen not to do so. It makes no more sense to heap hate on the soap-opera Windsor family that it does to hate the Kardashians.

May 7, 2023

That empire was *our* history. We *were* them until 1776.

The US didn't spring out of nothing; it was a bunch of disaffected Brits who didn't like George III's administration and taxation of the colony they were occupying (stolen from the people who already lived there, btw). Our legal system is based almost entirely on hundreds of years of English common law, and the philosophical underpinnings of the Constitution can be found in Locke's Second Treatise of Civil Government, in which he rejected the claims of absolute monarchy based on divine right and held that the inalienable rights of individuals form the basis of all rightful governments. The country we have now, good and bad, got its start in the British Empire. If it hadn't been for British colonialism we might not have ever come into existence in the first place, and certainly not as we are now.

April 5, 2023

I have just written a sonnet for TFG!

A shambling hulk with urine-colored hair
And lumpy, greasy face all orange and saggy
Slithered down his golden moving stair,
Once stood before the world in clothing baggy.

Imaginary concertina playing
As tiny baby hands move through the air.
Nasal bleating, whining, sneering, neighing
Tells us how the Deep State isn’t fair.

“What?” he says, “The D.A. is indictin’?
Since I did nothing wrong, how can that be?
It’s Hillary, or maybe Hunter Biden!
Not a thing could be the fault of me.”

But toadlike there he squats, with face of poker
Since nothing rhymes with orange, we’ll call it ocher.

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Hometown: Minnesota
Member since: Sun Oct 26, 2003, 11:54 PM
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