Friday, April 19, 2019

The Mueller Report: Some Speculations

1. Objective Matters.

     The factual contents of the report should not surprise anyone in the Right. There was never any basis for a claim that the Trump campaign had colluded with the Russian government, or with any “private-sector” Russian organization (insofar as such a designation has objective meaning). The Democrats seized on a jape by candidate Trump to the effect that if one of the Russian intelligence agencies had Hillary Clinton’s mysteriously disappeared 30,000 emails, it would be considerate to let the world see them. They elevated that jest to an accusation of collusion to undermine the November 2016 election which, as the Mueller report admits, is without substance. Thus, the report vindicates the president completely on that charge.

     As a legal matter, one cannot “obstruct justice” without doing something material to impede the investigation of a crime. In the absence of a crime and an investigation into who did it, when, and under what circumstances, an allegation that President Trump “obstructed justice” is baseless. As if more were necessary, note in this connection that no statue defines a crime of colluding with a foreign power to influence an election. For President Trump to express his displeasure at the accusations and the agonizing length of the Mueller probe was entirely innocent, just as it would have been if he were a private citizen rather than a public official. Despite the report’s dog-in-the-manger statement about “not exonerating” Trump, if no underlying crime was found, then a charge of obstruction was impossible to sustain, ludicrous on its face. It’s the prosecutor’s burden to establish that a criminal act took place; it is not required that the target of unsubstantiated accusations prove his innocence of a crime no one can objectively demonstrate.

     That takes care of both the facts of the matter and the Mueller report’s discussion of them.


2. Why The Length Of The “Investigation?”

     Twenty-two months is a long time for a prosecutor to pursue anything. Robert Mueller and his hirelings had no other duties but to look into the question of Russian interference in our elections. Did it really take that long to ascertain that while Russian agents tried to influence the election, no American collaborated with their efforts?

     It might have. Presidential campaigns are roughly two years long. They involve thousands of people and transactions. A number of incidents of dirty dealings – all from the Left – came to light while the campaign was in progress. While those incidents were not part of the Mueller report, consciousness of them might have animated the determination to keep looking, from the conviction that it’s rare for one side of a contest to be underhanded while the other is simon pure.

     However, an alternative explanation deserves to be addressed. Prosecutors who don’t prosecute are swiftly cast into disrepute. Robert Mueller saw himself as a prosecutor. Perhaps he was certain he’d find a crime beneath all the rhetoric if he only looked long enough and hard enough. He might also have been fueled by his Establishmentarian disdain for “upstart” Trump. Of these matters no one can be certain unless Mueller himself should one day admit to them.


3. Why The Length Of The Report?

     An investigator’s report 448 pages long is a long document indeed. The natural expectation from such length is that the investigator has a lot to report. However, in a heavily politicized case such as this one there’s a better explanation: the need to persuade the report’s audience that the investigation was thorough.

     Mueller’s team conducted interviews of and background investigations of dozens of people. There was assuredly enough material to write a 400-plus page report. Indeed, Mueller probably could have doubled its size had he chosen. But the facts of the matter are unaffected by the report’s bulk.


4. The Dog-In-The-Manger Comment.

     Robert Mueller, a long-time federal bureaucrat who was once the director of the FBI, probably shares the Establishment’s disdain for Donald Trump, the very first man to rise to the presidency with neither prior experience in office nor a distinguished military background. Atop that, Mueller was under pressure from the Left throughout the investigation. While his personal allegiances are unknown, he might have felt compelled to throw the anti-Trump forces a bone to improve his life expectancy, or the security of his loved ones.

     Andrew McCarthy has called Mueller’s “neither does it exonerate [Trump]” statement a breach of prosecutorial ethics, and he is certainly correct. Prosecutors either deem a deed criminal and he who stands accused of it prosecutable, or they refrain. To suggest that the president of the United States might be a criminal, albeit without substantiation or a filing for prosecution, is to suggest that Trump should be required to prove his innocence. This, when not only is the burden of proof on the prosecutor to prove the guilt of the accused, but the police and prosecutor’s office are required first to establish objectively that a criminal deed occurred, is more than merely a breach of ethics. Now that the report has been made public, it verges upon actionable libel.

     Nevertheless, Robert Mueller will certainly suffer no consequences for this breach.


5. What Now?

     The Democrats’ leaders and subsidiary voices will cherry-pick from the report in a despairing attempt to invert its plainly stated conclusions. They know that the report’s plain and unembellished findings spell disaster for their prospects of unseating President Trump nineteen months hence. So they must embellish; they must obfuscate; they must invent – and all of it without allowing public discourse to settle on the report’s conclusions.

     It won’t be pleasant. Neither will it cease at any foreseeable time. Fortunately, the Democrats will be waving, gesticulating, arguing irrelevancies, and slinging insults: throwing shadows rather than dealing with established facts. At this point we in the Right have all the real ammunition.

     Trump in 2020.

3 comments:

John C. said...

Of course this is not the end. With Democrats it never is the end until they win, ruined what they wanted to win and move on to ruin again.

Somewhere in Southern California is a 2 month old baby who will someday be the grand parent to the guy tearing down the statue of President Trump on campus. Then it will be over.

furball said...

Well said, Fran.

Yesterday, when I was following links in your post, I came across Thomas Sowell's mention of, "Absence of Malice." I'd never seen it, but found it on the internet and watched it last night. It tells the story of a DOJ official who uses a "complicit" media to try to railroad an innocent citizen.

It's 39 years old and serves as a great primer on Mueller's (and others') tactics. The movie was "pooh-poohed" by media critics in its day. And I seriously doubt the movie could be made in Hollywood now.

Tim Turner

NITZAKHON said...

We have the truth. We have the facts. We have the law. These are IRRELEVANT.

The only thing that matters is the public's perception, which - despite blogging and great sites, and so on - is still overwhelmingly beholden to the enemedia.