Monday, May 18, 2009

The Mighty CAN Fall But Rarely Do! Why Is That?

John Bohner, House Minority Leader, has said House Speaker Nancy Pelosi should either come up with evidence that the CIA misled her regarding the use of "enhanced" interrogation techniques or apologize to the CIA. That got me to wondering if there is a difference between being misled and being lied to. Boehner, apparently, does not think there is.

Oh what a tangled web we weave when first we practice to deceive. Sir Walter Scott
The question is who is being deceived and who is doing the deceiving!

Boehner went on to emphasize the fact that "lying to the Congress of the United States is a crime". Now there's a novel solution as to how to clean house. Literally. Actually prosecute every member of both houses and the administration who lies to the U.S. Congress. I'm not sure anyone would be left!

If it is a crime there must be a punishment, though in the tight knit club that is our government, it's rarely, if ever, doled out! I went searching and found the applicable code on the Cornell University Law School web site.
ITITLE 18 > PART I > CHAPTER 47 > § 1001

§ 1001. Statements or entries generally

(a) Except as otherwise provided in this section, whoever, in any matter within the jurisdiction of the executive, legislative, or judicial branch of the Government of the United States, knowingly and willfully—

(1) falsifies, conceals, or covers up by any trick, scheme, or device a material fact;

(2) makes any materially false, fictitious, or fraudulent statement or representation; or

(3) makes or uses any false writing or document knowing the same to contain any materially false, fictitious, or fraudulent statement or entry;

shall be fined under this title, imprisoned not more than 5 years or, if the offense involves international or domestic terrorism (as defined in section 2331), imprisoned not more than 8 years, or both.

Boehner, in suggesting that she turn said evidence over to the justice department so that any intelligence officials at fault could be prosecuted, in essence has given Ms. Pelosi a pass. If she is the one lying is she exempt from the law? For crying out loud, look what happened to Martha Stewart for "misleading" the FBI!

What about all the lies that were forth coming from the preceding Republican administration? Mr. Boehner's party! While there has been the usual posturing, no one seems to have the stomach to pursue such matters. Maybe laying five years on some of these folks would give them pause. Nothing else seems to get their attention.

Someone is lying. We'll never know who. The ranks have been closed and Ms. Pelosi will be protected. She may be diminished, but she will be protected. Do you wonder why I'm cynical?


Margie's Musings said...

Laws are seldom enforced on the wealthy.

Sylvia K said...

No, I don't wonder why you are cynical -- so am I. And as Margie said, the wealthy and influential to seem to get a pass when it comes justice.

Betty said...

The Republicans were in power at the time. Why isn't anyone asking what the Republican congressmen knew and when they knew it? Phooey! Just another attempt to distract from the important stuff.

Anonymous said...

Actually, it is the same reason we protect foreign diplomats from prosecution. "Diplomatic immunity". Preserved, because the next time it could be one of ours in the wrong. As old as the existance of man is, "one hand washes the other".

Nancy Pelosi won't even be diminished, mostly for the reasons already stated. The "it could happen to you" factor. But also, sadly, the American public has a very short memory and there are just so many of these ethically challenged moments. How does one keep them straight? CU