Over the last seven years, I haven’t had much to say about Julian Assange. There’s a reason for that. Mainly because he was never what either side as portraying him. He is neither an evil genius supervillain enemy of the State nor is he a 1st Amendment Hero of the Free Press.
Look, I get that Assange, Manning and Snowden have revealed things that we could not confirm before their actions. That doesn’t change the fact that (a) they most likely committed crimes or conspired to commit crimes to reveal these secrets; and (b) because Snowden and Assange ran away, we have not had the chance to debrief them. We actually have no idea the extent of the potential damage. Sure, they revealed things to us that embarrassed our government. What did they reveal to their hosts that we don’t know about?
The stupidity of the conspiracy theory that the US is just somehow going to disappear Assange is ludicrous. Bradley Manning participated in it all. He’s out of prison and ran for Congress. Assange is facing five years in a Federal lockup. And even that is a big assumption as many legal experts have already weighed in on the indictments inherent weaknesses. It is equally possible that a jury might never buy the governments arguments that he assisted Bradley Manning in successfully hacking into defense department computers. As it turns out, there is a line – thin though it may be – between investigative journalism and hacking.
He spent seven years living in a de facto jail cell inside the Ecuadorian embassy abusing their staff and property because, and again, I say this because I believe it, he is an ungrateful jerk and a moron.
At the end of the day, there’s a great deal of noise and commotion over Julian Assange. almost all of it unnecessary and meaningless. But – believe me – it makes him feel like he is the most important man in history.
You may or may not know, but I have been flattened for the last three days by some sort of evil Martian Death Virus. It comes with a low fever, vicious chills and pain in every joint I have except my right knee. So there’s that…
At any rate, with all the chatter about the various pardons issued by outgoing President Obama, including the Pvt Bradley Manning one, I thought that I would concentrate this Constitution Thursday on the Pardon power found in Article II. However, it’s possible that I will be in bed, shaking from chills and too sore to get up. So I figured I’d at least put up the show with John & I talking about the issue back in 2013. While this episode deals mostly with famous pardons up to that point, particularly Nixon, the process is the same; the effect is the same. And when this was recorded, I was also- as you can hear – quite sick!
If I can get up, I will try to add some more up to date thoughts to it. But if not… at least you’ll have this before I am gone, taken by the Martian Death Virus. For which the CDC has issued no warning about and is unlikely to get the same headlines as THE EBOLA!!!!!!!