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February 21, 2007

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Rick Ballard

Even better than cogent, it is entirely consistent with the arguments that he has made throughout the entire process. That's better than most of us have done. Mr. Libby is very fortunate that juries are never composed of people who employ the logical process which Cboldt employs in his determination. If they were, forgetful FBI agents and prosecutorial Javerts could fill prisons to their hearts content.

And they most certainly would, for the "justice" system would work with a ruthless efficiency heretofore achieved only under Stalin.

Cboldt has performed an admirable service in his endeavor and I appreciate the effort employed.

Carol Herman

FROM CAROL HERMAN

I go to CBOLT's site, daily. And, yes, I saw his update. Also saw his prediction. The jury will return with a verdict on Monday.

Then? I Also saw the government statement that Fitzpatrick WON'T BE MADE AVAILABLE to do the rounds of talk shows, after the jury comes back in, and their verdict is announced.

Well? If the jury finds Libby "tainted with some guilt," I'll presume Fitz will be pro-active, and attempt now to indict Cheney/Rove. Then, he'll run for the hills.

Of course, if the decisions favors Libby; then the "big kahuna" on the staircase, outside the courthouse, should be Wells. At least I would think so.

Even if the jury finds "guilt," I think Wells will steal the thunder, having prepared a GOLDEN APPEAL, arleady, and letting it fly.

Does anyone know how the attorney, Randy Turk, from BAKER BOTTS got to sit at the Defense Table yesterday? And, who recognized whom?

This morning, Walton started up with a "vior-der-ier" problem. In that one juror "recognized" Randy Turk. And Randy Turk (plus Baker Botts) had slammed this juror's case out of the courthouse.

Just another element of REVERSIBILITY?

I also think the DC Circuit of APPEALS has two hispanic justices on it. Salivating for the opportunity to serve "as the first hispanic assigned to the supreme court."

Makes for interesting times.

MayBee

Does cboldt touch on Fitzgerald's rebuttal? If he did, I don't see it.

Patrick R. Sullivan

'The jury will return with a verdict on Monday.'

Which would seem to be in conflict with his summary. Why would it take that long?

Michael

I'd like to use this caesura in actual news to ask an impertinent question. What did JOM do before the Libby trial, and what will it become in its afterlife?

I have hugely enjoyed the reports and comments here and freely admit to being a Libby-newbie (lewbie? scoobie?), and am wondering what comes next.

sbw

Cross-posted at Cboldt:

"the only memorable contact he had..."

The operative word is memorable. We're I the defense attorney, I'd make darn sure to separate the different "thens" -- pre-Russert, Russert, and GJ-investigation -- because Plame was unimportant, surprising, and only after the fact central.

Then I'd say "Libby's an attorney experienced with grand juries and no fool. He knows enough not to risk all fibbing during eight hours of grueling, repeated cross examination."

Then I'd parade how the investigation shows Fitz and the FBI contrived a mission from God to get Libby on the way to Cheney -- and he still wants to misuse this jury to get there.

Gee. Did I just run afoul of Walton?

Michael

No talks with reporters, no crime, I think it is fair to say. So what it is said to Libby is, at were, rehearsal and the talks with reporters are performance. 'Employing the logical process that cboldt' employs gets you to that the information was there for Libby to remember. The way memory works is that if something is critical or traumatic you replay it until you have all the 'movie' right in front of you, otherwise it is trimmed out like where cboldt had lunch on July 7, 2003.

Clarice: Jeffress highlighted the conflict between testimony of former White House press secretary Ari Fleischer, who said he had not told Washington Post reporter Walter Pincus about Plame, and Pincus's account, in which Fleischer was his source for that information. Jeffress said there were a lot of possible explanations, including that Fleischer lied.

"Of course, possibilities don't cut it in a criminal case," Jeffress said.

Cicero said 'I will pass over the following 3 treasonous things that Cataline did..' and names the 3 things. So Jeffress points out Fleischer could have thought to 'deflect a crime from himself' and also that that idea, like the idea that Libby lied, was 'a possibilty, which just doesn't cut it in a criminal trial.' Cool if the jury can hang on to it.

Carol Herman

FROM CAROL HERMAN

SBW reminds us "Libby's an attorney." Well, so is TIM RUSSERT. Russert is of two-minds, when it comes to "lawyers being with their clients in grand jury rooms."

In one instance, he recalled lawyer's can't.

Then, like a prostitute given the right amount of cash, suddenly for Dreck-N-rode, "he can."

Does he or doesn't he? Used to work for Clairol commercials.

And, now? Yesterday, to Gregory, IMUS referred to Russert as TUBBY.

So, ahead, perhaps Russert will be able to increase his $5,000,000 per annum; because he can sell "Slim Fast." Anna Nicole Smith is dead. So the gig's available.

But first he'd have to lose weight. And, then he'd have to be believable.

Ya just never know when Dan RaTHer will have to add a table-leaf, instead of just dining, alone?

So, far? America hasn't tuned in? Will it down the road? Perhaps, that would depend on what happens to Fitz. And, if he can proceed, as he wants to, in indicting Cheney and Rove. "That" grand jury; the one that followed the one that indicted. Still sits.

As to waltoon? He might become known for being more reversible, ahead, than a cheap sweater.

Rick Ballard

The same logical track which would convict Libby would convict Fleischer even more readily.

Fleischer testified with a get out of jail free card in his hand in exchange for the 'truth'. He testified that he received "hush hush' info on Monday and then presented a tale of having passed it on to three journalists while absolutely denying having passed it to a fourth. One of the three has published an account flatly stating that he did not receive the information and the journalist that Fleischer testifed that he did not give information to swore in court that Fleischer had, in fact given him precisely the information in question.

Therefore Fleischer has violated his immunity agreement and should be charged with perjury both at the gj and for his testimony in court. Especially so considering that all conversations occurred within five days of his having received "unforgettable" information.

Other Tom

Cicero presaged R.M. Nixon: "I could say that my opponent has had substantial ties with the communist party. Sure, I could say that, but I won't."

Where's my timeline?

I like cbolt's approach to the framing of the case.

And I wish that Rick and others had used their Razzle Dazzle thing to construct a timeline similar to the one in the Sunday NYT called "Did I Say That? Memory Proves Weak in the Libby Perjury Trial" by Scott Shane. (I cannot find a link!!!)

The timeline was vertical with inserts to the left and right of it with the various speakers coded as journalists on one side and the other players on the other side.

It did make a good trial timeline (though, as usual, poorly incomplete).

But as a pre-trial timeline, that would have been great.

Especially for clearing up the meme nonsense and the associated speculations on motives that the left in particular has been so good at.

Now, if I didn't have to work for a living and I was really good at computer graphics, I'd have put my money where my mouth is and done it myself...

I, like most people, I assume, am at the mercy of those who report full-time for the correct framing of the whole affair.

I depend on them for the correct framing and the priorities of the history of this that began with Wilson's anonymous I-told-them-so rant that was amplified by the NYT and the WaPo and other media types.

This timeline would have been similar to TM's original timeline but would have been a true memory aid and a powerful tool as a meme debunker.

However, thanks to TM and the others of you that have collated all the facts and done a fantastic cross analysis. Far, far better than anyone in the media has done. (And truly first class when compared to MSNBC's consistently standing everything about this trial on its head.)

Nothing stinks worse than pitiful history.

In that sense, what cbolt did was a good historical analysis and I like it! And whatever happens politically in this country in the near future needs the same serious cross analysis.

So, the good news to me is the Libby trial is never going to be over. It's just going to be moved to a different venue and very hopefully with a lot of folks throwing up their hands and yelling: Just one stinking minute!

Patrick R. Sullivan

The major problem with cboldt's reasoning is that none of the official sources testified to anything MEMORABLE.

No one said, 'Oh yeah, Scooter was really interested in hearing that Wilson's wife worked at the CIA and had a role in sending him. He said, "#*&!*%!, That's it, that's it!'

All the testimony is that it was 'told' to him. And as I said in an earlier thread, all totaled the mentions of wife come to probably less than 2 minutes over 6-7 weeks. You've got to forget SOMETHING of what happened to you during that period. Why not Wilson's wife?

Barry

I agree the case comes down to the issue of faulty memory or lying with regards to *how* Libby learned who sent Wilson. I fail to see any evidence presented that Libby thought it important, at that time, that he could be expected to remember it. He could be lying, but the gov failed to prove this, beyond reasonable doubt

JM Hanes

Even if Fitzgerald's closing hadn't blown some pretty big holes in the idea that this was not a leak case, cboldt's formulation strikes me as a stretch:

As I've pointed out ad nauseum, it's to the defense advantage to make this case about conversations with reporters, and ONLY about conversations with reporters.

But as the indictment goes, the prosecution aims to charge Libby with lying to investigators about the extent of, or presence of (or absence of, as Libby asserts) knowledge that Mrs. Wilson worked at the CIA, where that knowledge had some official basis.

That may be what the prosecution should have, or could have, been about. Fitzgerald did not, however, choose to charge Libby with lying about learning of Plame through official sources. He didn't charge him with lying about his memory of conversations with Grossman, Grenier etc. He don't charge him with lying about Cheney. Indeed, describing what could alternatively be called the "remarks" at issue as inherently more memorable "conversations" qualifies as "skillfully manipulating perception" too.

This prosecution takes it as given that Libby both knew and remembered what they assert, through witnesses, he must have learned through official channels. They then proceed to charge him with lying about his interactions with reporters. The defense didn't make this case about conversations with reporters. They are responding to the speciific charges that Fitzgerald ultimately brought against their client.

If what cboldt sees as the central question goes unaddressed, it's a prosecution failure not a red herring defense. The real disconnect here is, was, and continues to be the kind of disconnect we first saw between Fitzgerald's press conference claims and his actual indictment. There's simply no way to argue that fundamental charging flaw out of existence.

Patton

I think the whole trial verdict hinges on how you interpret these Libby words:

""And I said, no, I don't know that. And I said, no, I don't know that intentionally because I didn't want him to take anything I was saying as in any way confirming what he said, because at that point in time I did not recall that I had ever known, and I thought this is something that he was telling me that I was first learning. And so I said, no, I don't know that because I want to be very careful not to confirm it for him, so that he didn't take my statement as confirmation for him.


It seems alot of people take this to mean Libby is telling Fitz that he didn't remember hearing/telling about Plme from Grossman, Martin, Ari, etc.

BUT I DON'T READ IT LIKE THAT, AND SO I HAVE NEVER ASSICATED IT WITH THE TESTIMONY OF GROSSMAN, GRENIER, SMALLZ ETC HAS ANYTHING TO DO WITH IT.

Lets break it down:

I don't think anyone quarrels with this part: """"And I said, no, I don't know that. And I said, no, I don't know that intentionally because I didn't want him to take anything I was saying as in any way confirming what he said,...'''

Here's the part everyone thinks is the LIE:
""...because at that point in time I did not recall that I had ever known, and I thought this is something that he was telling me that I was first learning."""

NOTICE, Libby does not claim that he never knew, he claims at that exact moment during their conversation ((because at that point in time )))
It doesn't sound to me that Libby is claiming he never knew, or doesn't know remeber and I don't recall any other GJ testimony that Fitz says points out clearly Libby denied knowing.

All Libby appears to be saying, is during that conversation with Russert, at that point in time, he had what we commonly call, a brain fhart, because he was flustered by Russerts question and he didn't want to be in the position of
confirming information to a journalist.

So those that think this is a lie, need to show some evidence that Libby didn't have a momentary lapse of memory during his conversation with Russert. I just don't see how Grossman, Grenier, martin, etc. cover that area?

I could understand if Libby flat out denied ever knowing about plame, but in other parts of his GJ testimony, he not only admits knowing about her but admits talking about her.

So taken in context,Libby trying to descibe the specifics of what was going through his mind during his conversation with Russert is simply not refuted by any testimony but Russert, a known forgetter of important phone calls.

Patton

I guess what I am saying is the idea that you could be convicted of perjury for claiming you had forgotten something ''at a moment in time''' is beyond nitpicking and really is an abuse of the perjury and obstruction statutes.

There is absolutley no evidence that Libby did not forget for a moment in time, and we have all experienced moments when we simply don't remeber something.

Heck I've even forgotten my kids names when I go to scold them for something, but just for a moment.

To say that Libby saying he forgot something for a moment is is the same as Libby saying he never knew the information and then saying he is contradicted by the fact he had heard the information before, is huge stretch that people seem willing to make.

For your sakes, I hope you don't mind being a defendant and have to face this same type of so-called evidence.

Does anyone else believe THEY should be found guilty for saying you forgot something FOR A MOMENT and it being treated like you simply flatly denied knowing it through your 8 hours of testimony?

Barney Frank

JM,
I think cboldt is correct insofar as the official conversations are tangentially important to the charged conversations with reporters. Where it fails for me is the nature of the evidence and Fitz's motivations.
The evidence stinks and a conviction is almost by definition dependent on a wild arse guess by the jury as to Libby's memory and state of mind.
And Fitz's motivation, even being as charitable as possible and granting cboldt's thesis that he thinks he was lied to and is consequently pissed off, is not a proper use of prosecutorial discretion. He knows he was not misled to conceal a crime so it is apparently little more than, at best, personal animus motivating the power of the state being brought to bear against Libby.
This repeated reference to sand in his face is infantile and disingenous. What was he prevented from learning? If only Libby had said 'oh Timmy didn't say anything about Plame' Cheney would now be swinging from a yardarm or the 'cloud' over him would dissipate? What a crock.

There are several less charitable reasons that come to mind for this prosecution. But none of them justify Libby in the dock.

Patton

Any man who's wife asks him 'Whats our anniversay date?...who doesn't have a momentary lack of memory and has to think about it for a few seconds knows the feeling of not knowing something for a 'moment in time'.

And the moment seems really long when she's staring at you!! But its better to take the extra time to think and get it right, then guess and get it wrong.

Anyway, it just nags at me that anyone who actually reads Libbys testimony thinks he was denying knowing about Plame. All he said was he didn't remember it FOR A MOMENT!

hit and run

Patton:
Heck I've even forgotten my kids names when I go to scold them for something, but just for a moment.


Fitz to indict Bill Cosby's dad......

It was because of my father that from the ages of seven to fifteen, I thought that my name was Jesus Christ and my brother, Russell, thought that his name was Dammit. "Dammit, will you stop all that noise?" And, "Jesus Christ, sit down!" One day, I'm out playing in the rain, and my father yelled, "Dammit, will you get back in here!" I said, "But, Dad, I'm Jesus Christ!"
Dewey, Cheatum & Howe

No matter what happens to Libby (if exonerated, yippee!!! if convicted and pardoned...bigger yippee!!!!!!), I think we all can agree that Fitzy is poster child for why those who can't cut it in private practice end up as a Federal Prosecutor.

Publius

Carol: "As to Waltoon? He might become known for being more reversible, ahead, than a cheap sweater" (How do you get the italics?)

There is a seat for him on the Ninth Circuit Court where his reversals would blend so well into the Courts woodwork they wouldn't be notice.

Publius

****noticed*****

pldew

Pattton,

That is another way of saying what I thought the most important point Wells raised in the closing--whatever the witnesses say about what Libby had been told in June/July, the charges are based on what Libby said he recalled in October, then the following March, when his FBI interviews occurred. No evidence was presented that contradicts Libby's state of mind when the crimes were alleged to have taken place, which was testifying to the FBI and the grand jury.

If Libbby is acquitted, I'll be interested to see what the jury made of this.

Syl

I've long respected cboldt's analysis as representative of the prosecution's case. Even that Libby's motive to lie was to show that he couldn't have been a leaker because he obtained the information unofficially.

But I was basing my agreement on the information we had pre-trial. ie, the indictment and the selected snippets of testimony.

My mind was completely changed upon reading the actual gj testimony and hearing the testimony from the prosecution witnesses who had told Libby.

Libby testified that nobody official when presenting him with the information had ever indicated that it was classified. And none of fitz witnesses had told Libby it was classified.

And there's the hole in the theory. Not only does someone 'official' have to give you the information, it also must be relayed that the info should not be passed along because it is classified.

In fact Darth Cheney telling Libby is less significant than Harlow telling Martin.

Libby concocting a story that he heard it first from reporters is a non-defense when Libby had never heard from an 'official' that it was classified.

In either case he would remember being careful with the information because it concerned a CIA employee and that is a special class of information.

Fitz crying that Libby forgot specifically Cheney telling him is overstating the case.


JM Hanes

Barney:

I don't think cboldt is saying the official conversations are tangentially important to the charged conversations with reporters (where I would agree with you). He's essentially arguing that the Team Libby's decision to concentrate on reporter conversations rather than address the prosecution's "he said, he said, he said, she said" etc. is a function of their desire to obfuscate what he sees as the central accusation rather than the most effective, logical way to handle the actual crimes charged.

I have no problem believing Fitzgerald thinks he was being lied to either. I do, however, have serious doubts about his willingness to entertain inconvenient truths. I also think that making distinctions between what may be morally wrong and what may be both morally and crimminally wrong is not necessarily a function of moral obtuseness or ideological blindness, as cboldt seems fond of suggesting.

windansea

why aren't you commenting in this thread Cboldt?

cathyf

I have a question about precedent. Suppose the jury acquits on all counts. Obviously Libby has no grounds for appeal. If that happens, what sort of precedents would then stand? Are unconstitutional appointments ok? Bringing in a whole new case on appeal? Losing your 6th amendment rights to confront your accusers if you are going to impeach them?

Barney Frank

--He's essentially arguing that the Team Libby's decision to concentrate on reporter conversations rather than address the prosecution's "he said, he said, he said, she said" etc. is a function of their desire to obfuscate what he sees as the central accusation rather than the most effective, logical way to handle the actual crimes charged.--

I didn't get that from what he said. He said their argument was a very effective defense and it is. I took his reasoning to be that the official discussions were tangential in that they only indirectly make the case for the chrges of perjury with Russert and Cooper.

--why aren't you commenting in this thread Cboldt?--

JOM is a s***hole, per cboldt.


clarice

If he wins and there's no appeal the rulings of the District COurt stand. They are not of great weight, however, because they remain the trial court rulings of a single district court.

Ralph L.

Do lawyers give greater weight to precedents from convictions that stand, versus acquitals?

Syl

Let me try to state this again.

Cboldt's contention as expressed in this snippet: See, again, making the narrative all about the conversation with reporters, and not about whether or not Libby attempted to deliberately mislead investigators to the conclusion that Libby had no recollection of an official basis for knowing Wilson's wife worked at the CIA.

is misleading because you MUST define 'official basis'.

Official basis has TWO parts.

Yes, we know there were many officials who mentioned to Libby that wifey was CIA.

But that is not an 'official basis' because there was NO evidence presented that any of these witnesses fitz trotted out had told Libby that this was classified information.

Libby did not NEED to pretend that he only heard from unofficial sources.

Follow me?

Syl

shoot

Syl

Let me try to state this again.

Cboldt's contention as expressed in this snippet: See, again, making the narrative all about the conversation with reporters, and not about whether or not Libby attempted to deliberately mislead investigators to the conclusion that Libby had no recollection of an official basis for knowing Wilson's wife worked at the CIA.

is misleading because you MUST define 'official basis'.

Official basis has TWO parts.

Yes, we know there were many officials who mentioned to Libby that wifey was CIA.

But that is not an 'official basis' because there was NO evidence presented that any of these witnesses fitz trotted out had told Libby that this was classified information.

Libby did not NEED to pretend that he only heard from unofficial sources.

Follow me?

clarice

I do. The person I can never follow is Cboldt.

sylvia

"The defense holds firm that the case is nothing more than he-said she-said between Libby and reporters. The indictment and the prosecution say otherwise."

Exactly. That's what I believed for weeks here. It's not about the reporters- it's about Libby's OWN statements to the grand jury.

Syl

I'm struggling here tonite for some reason.

IOW, Libby had no motive to lie about hearing it from reporters because that would only mitigate guilt if he had actually had official knowledge that this was classified information. But there was no evidence presented that he had obtained that requisite official knowledge.

But.....here comes the Cheney conspiracy....


sylvia

"that would only mitigate guilt if he had actually had official knowledge that this was classified information."

There was dispute then and even a little now whether it actually WAS classified knowledge. Libby didn't know for sure at the time whether it was considered classified, that's why he had a motive to fudge.

Cecil Turner

My mind was completely changed upon reading the actual gj testimony and hearing the testimony from the prosecution witnesses who had told Libby.

Mine, too. I always thought it was a ditzy lie, but given other ditzy statements by Libby, I thought it quite possible (about a coin-flip). After reading the GJ testimony, it's obvious Libby was well aware that "not from official sources" wasn't a defense, and his not having any indication the information was classified was a defense. That not only demonstrates the lie was nonsensical, but that he was aware of it at the time. Which significantly changes the likelihood of him lying (reducing it to about nil, IMHO).

Syl

clarice

I followed cboldt back when he first presented this. I think I was the only one who may have agreed.

I was waiting for evidence at trial that Libby had been informed, officially, that this was classified info. I saw none.

pldew

Libby attempted to deliberately mislead investigators to the conclusion that Libby had no recollection of an official basis for knowing Wilson's wife worked at the CIA.

But didn't Libby acknowledge that Cheney had told him about Plame in his gj testimony?

Syl, I agree Libby didn't need to pretend where he heard this from. In fact he did not.

sylvia

"After reading the GJ testimony, it's obvious Libby was well aware that "not from official sources" wasn't a defense"

Do you have any excerpts from that to illustrate to others who didn't catch that?

Dave in W-S

If Libby is convicted on any of the accounts, I presume that he would then lose his right to practice law. If he were pardoned, would that vacate any adverse action by the bar? Or would the stigma still attach by virtue of the conviction, even though he received pardon?

Cecil Turner

Libby didn't know for sure at the time whether it was considered classified, that's why he had a motive to fudge.

Nonsense. It not only has to be classified, he has to know it. He clearly didn't, and made precisely that point in the GJ:

My understanding, when I heard it from Vice President Cheney, was that it wasn't classified information. I didn't understand it to be classified information. So my understanding would be, if I didn't think it was classified information, if it wasn't presented to me as classified information, if I wasn't intending to release classified information, that it wouldn't be a crime.
Of course, you could always prove he was lying by finding someone who told him it was classified. Only problem with that theory is, it's the only thing all the witnesses agree on (they didn't know it was).

Rick Ballard

If only a statute had been violated it would be the perfect crime.

AJStrata

Begone Bold! Hope that worked.

The problem with the legal fine points are the jury is going to determine if all this amounts to obsrruction. Cboldt is probably technically right, but those 'amatuer observers" are your classic jury pool. Legal finesse and subtleties drop into the 'reasonable doubt' cloud, which includes 'why is anyone bothering with this?" conclusions. Jury nullification, in a less strict sense, still plays a role here. If the jury thinks this is much ado about nothing, they will side with Libby and fail to believe he needed to hide anything. Never forget the capacity of a juror to put themselves in the defendent's shoes from time to time. The plamiacs I think have over thought this to some degree, and the Fitzmas elves on the left have been too absorbed in fantasy conspiracy theories.

No one cares about Wilson or Plame anymore. There may have been a chance if these were tied to a case about the illegal exposure of Plame. But without the serious context to shore it up the jurors will probably dismiss or hang.

Carol Herman

FM: CAROL HERMAN
TO: PUBLIUS

You're putting waltoon up, evenutally, on the 9th? I gather you think Hillary comes in next, in the White House race? While I don't.

The circuit in question, is the DC CIRCUIT. It's, I believe, a 3-PANEL arrangment. And, up there? I do believe you've got up there, two conservative gents: Peter Keisler. And, Miguel Estrada. With Estrada holding the hispanic ticket; supposedly on "fast track."

To claim the reversible waltoon has everything going for him, so that his elevator goes UP, is to misunderstand the elevator's capacity. It's been going UP empty for awhile.

As to waltoon, for the record?

He wants Libby found guilty on "something." Even including Judith Miller. WHich shows ya about reversible "garments." She was struck. So how do you use her, now?

Let alone what I think can happen.

Most of the charges will drop. If there's anything where there's gonna be agreement, AND ONLY BECAUSE YOU ARE IN DC! It's gonna be on one charge; while the others "go clear."

Waltoon, ahead, will have choices. He's an idiot without fear. Ditto, THurgood Marshall. So what blacks use for their tape measure ... is similar to what they use when they jump over broomsticks. Prone to stuff that's not very mainstream.

Let alone the DC Circuit isn't gonna be all that ready to "halp" waltoon. (If I'm not mistaken, Clarice alluded to waltoon already being reversed many times.) A very used reversible position, not one that will bring to him shock or shame.

Well, Kofi Anan uses the same tailor. It's a real ass-grabber. In that they make it UP. But the ladder attaches to their backsides. And, disappears for others on the bottom. Who will wait an eternity for another ladder to appear.

Anyway, this jury is still "out."

How far "out?" Time will tell.

Cecil Turner

Do you have any excerpts from that to illustrate to others who didn't catch that?

The transcript rambles badly (both Fitz and Libby), but from p.174:

. . . my understanding is that, technically, if something has appeared in the press through a leak but has not been unclassified, you're not supposed to talk about it. I I don't know whether it's a crime or not, but I think you're not supposed to talk about it.
That's in response to Fitz's leading question on the "learned it from reporters" theory. The quote cited above ("I didn't think it was classified information") is from p177, where Libby proffers his own theory.

sylvia

Well Cecil it's an interesting point. However, one could argue that it was not black and white that it wasn't specifically not classified. Him hearing it from the CIA and Cheney should have led him to understand that it may have been classified, and he didn't know at the time what could be used against him to indicate he knew it should have been classified info. One could argue he was protecting Cheney for Cheney not telling him it should have been classified. Ignorance is not always an excuse from the law. People in positions of power are often overly paranoid - that's why there are no shortage of coverup scandals.

AJStrata

One last try. Go away bold!. Work?

Syl

sylvia

There was dispute then and even a little now whether it actually WAS classified knowledge. Libby didn't know for sure at the time whether it was considered classified, that's why he had a motive to fudge.

Libby testified he did not know she was classified. There is no evidence that anyone told him this. So I wouldn't call it a 'dispute then'.

It's not a matter of whether she was classified or not. It's a matter of knowledge of that fact.

JM Hanes

sylvia:

"It's not about the reporters- it's about Libby's OWN statements to the grand jury."

And I'd say you're only half right. Take the Russert charge, for instance. Libby is charged with lying about what Russert said. Then he's charged with lying about how he would have felt if Russert had actually said that he said what Libby lied and said he said. Get it?

I'm connvinced that's precisely the kind of thing Fitz had in mind when he said this case was "a he said he said he said he said she said she said she said he said."

Carol Herman

FROM CAROL HERMAN

On another note. Up at DRUDGE. Pelosi called Bush to complain about Cheney's remarks.

FOr the record: Cheney was "remarking" that the dems were off the wall on Iraq.

And, ya know what struck me? I must have paied way too much attention, here; but I immediately thought of Bush having to decide which hat he'd wear to take pelosi's call.

Was he wearing his "viewer's complaint hat?" Or was he thinking more in terms of his wife's hat? The one she wears when she goes out to the decorator's?

Most of America is banking on Bush. And, our troops WINNING in Iraq! (How do I know? I read it on Drudge.) Where most people go these days, when they want to know what's hot. And, what's not.

This case? A mere one sentence referral, deep on the right side headlines. Not quite the poop. If this was the poop that was supposed to be important poop.

At least not yet.

Any hoo, if walton goes un-caught. We won't need to have witnesses at trials. Just people who come in, and forget. Except for a sentence they read out loud, taken from a fortune cookie.

Waltoon will be reversed. Or shredded. He ain't gonna go to the 9th. Even if Alex Kazinski gets to be blessed with a Supreme Court nomination.

Of course, it's in the future. FATE can call it. I'm only guessing, here.

hit and run

Rick Ballard:
If only a statute had been violated it would be the perfect crime.


Oh but a statue was violated!

Rick Ballard

Fitz is a cross dresser?

I have to step out and chat up a couple of fence posts. It helps me empathize with some of the kind commenters here.

sylvia

"Then he's charged with lying about how he would have felt if Russert had actually said that he said what Libby lied and said he said. Get it? "

Yeah it does get confusing. That's why I think the Russert charges will be dropped.

Carol Herman

FM: CAROL HERMAN
TO: JM HAYNES

You raise the issue of Wells' concentrating on "he said, she said," instead of what would have been a more cogent approach (as if DC jurors were also intellectuals.)

But your point goes out the window once you realize that Waltoon didn't allow in any memory experts.

All the jurors have are their own fouled up memories. So well stated by PATTON: Yes. Men do forget their anniversary dates! Especially if they're busy. And, they work hard to bring their familes "up a notch or two."

On the other hand? MOST MOMS KNOW HUSBANDS ARE ATTROCIOUS AT REMEMBER THE YEARS IN WHICH THEIR KIDS WERE BORN! Even if they can get the calendar date! They're rarely able to come close to the correct decade.

I still think the MAN UPSTAIRS holds more chips than waltoon.

And, even as a kid I used to wonder about "carpet-baggers," and why Reconstruction was such a miserable failure. Well? You can't stack the deck. That's cheating. And, it's even cheating when you do it with cards.

How did waltoon ever pass law school exams? He seems so UNFAMILIAR with the US CONSTITUTION. What's that? That's the BEDROCK. And, yes. It does state a defendant can FACE HIS OR HER ACCUSER! Was Plame brought in by Fitz? Or is he just interpreting his opening that she was a class act, abused by Libby.

Personally, I think Wilson outted his own wife. I think Plame gets nice taxpayer pension paychecks, ahead. And, if she was "under cover" for the CIA; then the russian men she played with were naked. Or at least had their pants down around their ankles.

And, Plame's getting the pension checks, ahead. Not Monica!

Fitz is a fraud. Rather sad these crimes can be committed, in DC, in broad daylight.

Yes. If our crime rates have been going down? Waltoon shows ya what happens when, instead of jail. You put a bad man up on the bench. WAY OVER HIS HEAD! Too bad he didn't drown.

hit and run

The Lady Justice statue ranks as one of the most well known statues in the world. Although, this statue is not typically attributed to any one famous sculptor, the fact that it adorns so many of the world’s courthouses has rendered it one of the more well known sculptures.

While it goes by many names, the most popular are Lady Justice, Scales of Justice, and Blind Justice. The statue dates it origins from ancient Greek and Roman times as the lady represented is Themis, the goddess of justice and law. Well known for her clear sightedness, she typically holds a sword in one hand and scales in the other.

The scales that she holds represent the impartiality with which justice is served and the sword signifies the power that is held by those making the decision. During the 16th century, artists started showing the lady blindfolded to show that justice is not subject to influence. From this, the statue earned the name Blind Justice.

danking70

Man oh Man, you've got to see this Obama/Hillary cartoon over at LGF.

It's a paradox of such magnitude that a multiculturists head might explode.

http://littlegreenfootballs.com/weblog/?entry=24526_Egyptian_Two-Fer-_Racism_and_Misogyny_in_One_Cartoon&only

(Sorry, I slept during the class on putting links in text. Cut and Paste whiners.)

Carol Herman

FM: CAROL HERMAN
TO: HIT & RUN

In some versions of Lady Justice, she's got one tit exposed. And, I seem to remember Aschcroft covering her up with blue velvet.

Twits & Nitwits go far in government. While smart men like Libby are better off turning down work in our White House.

He's not the only one where this "work" proved costly.

Reagan had Lyn Nofziger on his team, starting around 1966. Early enough. Reagan had just entered the Governor's Mansion in Sacramento. (California.)

By the time 1988 rolled around, the lawyers were raking Nofziger over the coals. It cost him $3,000,000 to defend himself. And, he defended his honor, because he didn't want to cut a cheap deal.

The REAL CANCER in DC is that the lawyers are loose. They're getting backed by a DYING INDUSTRY! The Press is a dying industry!

As to the madness of Fire Dog Lake, all I can say is that the Internet was used. That trash was FOISTED UP in order to create an amplifier for Fitzgerald.

Do they die, ahead? You bet. I can't wait for this trial to be over, so that I can go into my bookmarks and delete everything I've been following these past few weeks.

MarkO

I have tried to catch up by reading the summaries of the closing arguments. I really didn't see much on JOM that discussed the theory of the arguments or the structure. Those are the things that attract me. It is hard to know how much of the summary really constitutes the actual argument. Moreover, there were visual aids that likely had some impact.

From a stylistic perspective, the prosecution's use of "nine" witnesses was a deft stroke. It was an invitation to the defense to jump through the hoops of those nine. It tempts the defense to focus on the prosecution's outline of the case.

In making an argument like this, the important part is to have the jury keep your outline of the case as the outline. To the extent that Wells and Jefferies had to play off of the Government's opening, they would reinforce the wrong outline.

Let me give you a silly example:

If the prosecution's case were (and this is far from literal) this,

1. Nine witnesses said they told Libby about Wilson's wife
2. No one could forget nine conversations.
3. Libby lied in the GJ.

If the defense merely answers that, they are losing the opportunity to have the jury think in their mode.

So, they should answer those questions in the scope of their argument.

1. Libby told the truth
2. At the time this first came up, Wilson's wife was unimportant and unremarkable. (this covers the nine)
3. It is easy to forget unimportant things, more so when your head is filled with important things. (here you cover the point that getting the truth out about Wilson's op ed was important. He wife, at the time, was unimportant.)
4. Cannot convict on memory lapse. (here you drive a truck through the evidence.)

Finally, I would tell the jury it should look for the prosecution to explain maybe five things. And I would tell them not to be taken in by any histrionics or political arguments.

Those five things might be:

1. If this is a search for truth, why did the government hide Russert's non-confidential FBI discussion?
2. Why did the government not fully explain if they had searched for the FBI notes and exactly what they did? Were they hiding them?
3. Why hasn't the government explained what it was investigating? Long before Mr. Libby testified, the government knew that Armitage was the leaker. The government should explain how this prevented them from finding the leaker.
4. By putting a witness on the stand, I think the government is sponsoring that witness. Each of the "nine" witnesses had significant memory problems. One said something unbelievable: that it was "impossible" for him to be wrong--and those lost notes would have helped us. You should expect the government, with all its resources, to have better witnesses in a memory case. Look to see if the government can explain why it put such unreliable witnesses on the stand. Moreover, they should explain why they want you to disregard all the errors in the testimony and hear only what they have so single-mindedly sought.
5. Why, if all their witnesses have doubts, you should not.

This way, we have taken the outline of the argument from the prosecution, explained their points in our outline and given them issues to discuss that will pull them out of their outline.

For all I know, something like this really happened.

It's evil and it works.

Really. Should I get a life?

I will miss this.

abad man

The problem with cboldt’s line of reasoning though is that the prosecution’s official gov’t witnesses all had problems with memory as well, including Martin. All had reconstructed memories, or had their memories jogged, after the fact, which is OK with Fitz. No one really looked into how many other times the Gov’t witnesses had heard about Plame before she began to fade from their minds. Libby does the same thing and he is lying, this is not OK with Fitz. The unspoken implication is that for some reason Wilson’s wife/Plame is more important to Libby than the others. She has to be for this line of reasoning to work.

This leads unerringly to the Big case. If you believe the big case, Libby cannot forget Plame and Libby is guilty as sin. If you think there is no Big case, Libby is no better than the other witnesses, but certainly no worse, certainly not a perjurer.

So I think cboldt has missed the mark in regard to the two groups. This has always been about the big case. Without it there really is no prosecution case, just a bunch of people with typically bad memories. Fitz’s efforts to bring the big case into the trial during his rebuttal demonstrate his knowledge that he cannot prove the little case without the big case.

This is why Wells ignores Grossman, Fleischer, et al. they lead back to the big case, unproven and likely untrue, but there in the public psyche. Why should Wells poke that snake? How stupid is Fitz to think he would?

danking70

I finally caught up with today's posts and I just have to say that I knew Dana Milbank was a woman.

Damn that was a funny bit.

clarice

Very good, MarkO. There will be other trials.

windansea

JOM is a s***hole, per cboldt.

that's no excuse...:)

MarkO

Clarice,

Thanks again for your hard work. After you write the book, will you sign a copy for me?

prtymbl

MarkO,

If I ever need a defense team, I want you on it!

Michael

Other Tom: In some similarity to Scooter, I felt that way too. "I could say that my opponent has had substantial ties with the communist party. Sure, I could say that, but I won't." , that's RM
being a cheap imitation of the real handbag. You see Cicero went on to give the evidence. What he did was detach his authority from the evidence, let it be res ipse loquitur; what made it doubly cool though was that he also was subtly up front about acknowledging that you would have been impelled in some sense (but not as with the emperors) to believe him on his authority. RM was only saying 'I'm cool like Cicero.' RM ultimately got the country to say, 'Like we care.'

clarice

Sure MarkO *if*

I think this has been such fun--especially as the prosecutor so overstated his case and the press so badly reported it. I never believed Fitz' version was genuine. Now I know it was a crock.

Rick Ballard

Clarice,

Do you know if Haditha is up before AIPAC? I suppose we should brush up on both a bit.

Unless DoJ gets off its butt and goes after Sulzberger and Risen. That's the one I really want to see happen.

windansea

I started out thinking Fitz was seeking the truth, had hopes he might uncover the perfidy of Wilson and the CIA

after his presser I thought he was either confused or seriously deranged enough to buy the Wilson whistleblower crap

after seeing him present his case, especially his close, I am quite sure he is a frustrated ass with serious issues

Ralph L.

I worry the jury will get wrapped up in small details or suppositions about what really may have happened instead of focusing on the actual counts. It may help the defense that there's so much information that jurors refrain from getting too bogged down in them and return to reasonable doubt.

I hope someone gave them a graphic timeline or calendar, too.

windansea

I am supremely confident in my sense of right and wrong and think this jury will surprise us and aquit on all charges

Ralph L.

Anyone guessing when?

clarice

There still have been no court martials initiated in Haditha. The AIPAC cases are due to go to trial in June. I'm watching the first. Re the AIPAC cases if there's interest, I'll try to see if we can get the court filings once this trial is over.

Macranger insists the gj in Alexandria is still sitting and taking evidence on the NSA et al leaks of actual classified evidence.

All three are high enough profile that we can track them in this way.

Syl

MarkO

I think you nailed the defense--I think they actually hit all your points in close.

Thanks for all your informative posts through the trial.

Carol Herman

FROM CAROL HERMAN

You know, it's a surprise to me that you can try DEFENDING a case, by NOT using what the prosecutor presents AS HIS CASE. Ya know why?

I thought the prosecutor ESTABLISHES the accusations. And, the Defense attorney makes sure his client can (BEDROCK CONSTITUTION), face THOSE accusers in court.

So? IF Wells had done something, let's say with calling Plame,to show she was UNinjured. And, that her own HUBBY, months earlier was using his wife to do social climbing ... wouldn't waltoon have slapped wells for that?

IT WASN'T IN THE CASE IN CHIEF, CHIEF. Not as far as my eyes can see.

You spot land? Or appeal? A journey to see. To see if we're at sea. Or on Constitutional Bedrock, after all.

clarice

Michael, Cicero, I get. His legal arguments are certainly a template for many legal arguments today as are his arguments on political matters. (I just saw him getting his hands cut off and nailed to the Senate doors on HBO tonight). But who is RM?

danking70

Clarice, it feels like forever with that NSA grand jury.

The LA Times leak on those pilots is just obscene but I have doubts that the DOJ will do anything about it.

topsecretk9

--I am supremely confident in my sense of right and wrong and think this jury will surprise us and aquit on all charges

Posted by: windansea | February 21, 2007 at 09:10 PM--

Windandsniffer -

Me too (althogh I harbor a hung jury). I think. Anyways, If so and I come to Maheeco will you buy this old "tose to the nose" gal a Bohemia?

JM Hanes

RalphL

When I want speculation, I watch cable news. :)

clarice

danking, yes, it does seem forever. So does the Jefferson case where they caught him w/ all that cold cash.

Syl

I'm not sure there'll be another trial that interests me as much as the Libby trial. I wasn't even all that interested in OJ. Well, I was pretty busy back then and didn't have time to watch.

But this one had everything BUT sex. Sausage making in several areas, not just the press. Politics. Niger. Intel. CIA. Bureaucratic infighting. Classified info. Plenty of MSM fisking. Personalities in govt, media, blogs. A tape! With swear words! LOL And lots to learn about the law. Gossip. Intrigue. Little coverups. Anticipation. Sleuthing. Redaction analysis. Moonbat wrastling.

clarice

Well, it has been interesting.
But Haditha and AIPAC have some similarities, In the AIPAC case a lot of the same FBI and DoJ jerks are involved. In both the press reportage has been equally biased..stick around, Syl. You might be surprised.

danking70

Now that Jefferson is on the Homeland Security House committee, I feel that much safer knowing that taxpayer dollars and our safety will stay cool in his freezer.

Culture of Corruption.

Which consultant sold them on that one.

Sara (Squiggler

The elephant in the jury room is the Armtiage tape. Everything plays off that tape, not the least of which is Armitage's characterization of Joe Wilson. Woodward has every bit as much gravitas as Russert, probably more, afterall he is Robert Redford. With that tape staring them down, the jurors must start deliberations with a "what was this all about?" attitude and that can only be good for Libby. It undoes ALL preconceived, media induced, notions.

And from another thread, re: Woodward's potential book -- it is already written, he is just waiting for the verdict to fill in the last chapter and perhaps get a few on the record comments from all parties.

windansea

Me too (althogh I harbor a hung jury). I think. Anyways, If so and I come to Maheeco will you buy this old "tose to the nose" gal a Bohemia?

of course...surfer girls are my favorite :)

clarice

A very disturbing study on the sheer idiocy of 25% of voters and a suggestion that a literacy test might not be such a bad idea.
http://www.grassrootinstitute.org/GrassrootPerspective/DecidingElections.shtml>Stupid voters

topsecretk9

Jefferson case update -

While he lost the ruling that his seized doc weren't "privileged"(and so they were all retrieved from hard drives etc.) he did win a ruling that he'd be able to argue over every piece -- IOW's every piece of evidence retrieved from his office (FBI thing Hassert came to his rescue for) will be argued over, but not until this spring-

And I think the spring comes from the fact that they will be arguing every piece (no doubt his lawyers will argue every doc is "official" or privileged) in front of a 3 panel and this was decided in the fall - my uncynical sides says it's because in the fall all 3 judges were booked and had vacations planned.

Syl

Clarice

Actually pretty much anything would be preferable to the race for the nomination. I just want to shut my eyes for a year.

re 'stupid voters'

stupid people have just as much right to vote as I have. There is no such thing as a perfect government OR electorate.

ghostcat

Sara -

It's pretty weird that Woodward is a key actor in his own nonfiction drama. One could argue that he singlehandedly disproved Fitz's version of the backstory.

Ralph L.

Clarice, I think he meant RN--Nixon.
The administration learned the NYT had the NSA leak in late 2004, so that's 2 years and no indictments. I want to see some reporters in jail again, for contempt if nothing else.

So there's been no article 32 hearing on Haditha yet? If they can't get one Marine to turn against the others, I doubt there's really a crime there, although combat does create a unique bond between men.

JM Hanes

MarkO

I think that's a very useful exposition. On the defense end, I think they made a stronger showing with regard to the first class of objectives. They were less organized about setting up hoops for the Prosecution to jump through, although they certainly touched on most of the kind of issues you describe in group two. The shifting sands of big case vs. little case may have inhibited their abilitity to pose such challenges in any systematic way.

Nevertheless, in keeping with your suggestions, I think it would have been helpful to formulate some fairly explicit questions for the jury to carry with them into deliberations -- as long as they weren't specific enough to be handled in the prosecution's rebuttal though, eh? From Wells final exhortation, however, it sounds like Team Libby was perhaps less worried about prosecution inroads than about the potential ramifications of existing political bias amongst the jurors themselves.

clarice

Ralph, I thought he meant Nixon, I just couldn't be sure.
I think the Haditha case has huge problems for the prosecution and Gen McInerney for whom I have the utmost respect has charged that there has been untoward command influence in this case. I think it's time to charge these guys or cut bait. I think this case was a pc political thing from all the public stuff on it I've seen so far.

Rick Ballard

Thanks, Clarice. I'll talk to Charlie and see if we can get a doc repository set up. Group efforts are easier to handle on a wiki but I would prefer to see some enthusiasm for taking pieces before we get too far into it.

danking70

Sara do you know which Cable News channel is moving to the front?

clarice

Rick, Someone just sent me anonymously, these charges in the Haditha case and a report of an investigation into the NCIS leaks of matters in the case file. You want these:

http://www.usmc.mil/lapa/Iraq/Haditha/Haditha-Press-Statement-061221.htm

http://www.usmc.mil/lapa/Iraq/Haditha/Haditha-Preferred-Charges-061221.htm

http://jurist.law.pitt.edu/paperchase/2007/01/us-marines-to-investigate-haditha.php

Sara (Squiggler

danking -- I seriously doubt it is MSNBC or CNN, but that is just a guess. Educated guess, but still a guess and I could be wrong.

clarice

Ask and ye shall receive, from out of the ether, this on the AIPAC case:
http://www.fas.org/blog/secrecy/2007/02/ruling_in_aipac_case_interpret.html>AIPAC case

FAS will likely continue to make filings available, they have provided
many to date, in addition to useful commentary since before charges
were filed."

JM Hanes

Syl:

"I'm not sure there'll be another trial that interests me as much as the Libby trial. "

Ditto that here, Syl. I've been interested in following this particular trial for a host of reasons, not because following trials, per se, is uniquely appealing. I have no real desire to hop onto the next train leaving the station, in part because the issues that concern me most in this one will not expire with a verdict either way, and in part because one trial-of-the-century every decade or so is pretty much my limit. There's a big world out there! :)

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