Court Orders Are For Little People

Among the ways in which the 'Russia collusion' theory has collapsed is that a Federal judge recently ordered the government to stop claiming it had shown that the Russian government was behind the activities by the cyber firms that ran Facebook ads in 2016. Those firms are private, and the government didn't actually bother to establish a connection in the Mueller report -- nor did it file any indictments against Russian government officials, nor against any American citizens for working with the Russian government.
On July 1, 2019, Judge Dabney L. Friedrich issued an order (to which the government agreed) prohibiting further public statements by the government about the Concord and IRA case, particularly statements alleging that Concord and IRA worked on behalf of the Russian government. A more detailed discussion of this train wreck can be read here.

But Mueller Just Did It Again
This takes us to the Mueller testimony before the House Judiciary and Intelligence Committees last week. On live television in front of an audience of millions, former special counsel Robert Mueller carefully skirted speculating on the guilt or innocence of Roger Stone due to his ongoing criminal prosecution. But nobody apparently reminded Mueller that Judge Friedrich had ordered Mueller’s team to stop saying Concord and IRA worked for the Russian government.

The government hasn’t alleged that, can’t prove it, and abandoned those allegations in open court. The government had only just barely escaped a criminal contempt citation because Mueller’s report and Barr’s press conference seemed to allege that the Russians (the Russians, as in the Russian government) were behind the troll farms. And that’s not true, according to the government’s own admissions.
It's amazing how weak the Russia case is, given that House Democrats continue to fulminate around impeachment over it. Carter Page, against whom the FISA warrant was issued and renewed multiple times, faces zero charges. The government will have collected all of his communications and those of those with whom he spoke, but he faces no charges -- especially not for being a Russian spy, but actually not for anything whatsoever.

No Americans were indicted, let alone convicted, for working with any Russians -- government or private citizen.

No Russians were indicted who worked for the Russian government. The Federal government has agreed to stop claiming it established any connections to the Russian government even among Russian nationals working on 2016.

The SDNY investigation into the Trump organization is done, and came up empty on Russia.

Even in the case against Wikileaks founder Julian Assange, who is widely believed to be working for Russia, no indictments have been lain against him for anything to do with Russian interference in the 2016 elections.

Some within the government, even Mueller, continue to talk as if they had something. Every time there's an acid test, though, where they might have to provide actual proof of these claims -- every time, they don't put up, and yet they also don't shut up.

Maybe it's all true, and our intelligence agencies are sitting on the proof because they don't want to expose sources and methods to discovery. That's now how our justice system works, though. You cannot use power against an American citizen without the consent of a jury of his or her peers. You've got to put up to us, or else shut up. If it's true, if any of it is true, the cards have been called.


Assistant Village Idiot said...

The threat is always held, that if we don't let them operate in secret like this, they will be unable to reveal sources and therefore will have no choice but to abandon fighting back against nefarious enemies. It is a very, very good argument, as we all know that the world of Spy Vs. Spy is murky, ambiguous, and dirty. We politely pretend not to notice so that less scrupulous men and women can do what needs to be done without involving us. I have been willing to grant them this most of my adult life. Yet the balance has shifted over time.

It has now shifted to the other side. I am 60-40 in the other direction and willing to take the risk of exposure, because of their proven corruption and unreliability. They no longer get the benefit of the doubt.

Aggie said...

In the environment you describe, there has always been a trusted and impartial layer of credentialed authority where the secret evidence would be presented and proposed actions subjected to oversight with either approvals issued or denied. It is this important layer that has failed miserably to perform its intended function, and this is why it is so important that it be hauled out into the light of day, so that the misdeeds are described in exhaustive detail and punishments applied.

The Mueller inquisition is rife with examples of abuse of prosecutorial authority - there seems to be no end of them. In my view they all need to be hung by their weenies until they start apologizing in detail.

Adam Mill said...
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