Saturday, January 22, 2011

A Travesty of a Travesty of Justice.

Nowadays people have absorbed the notion of 'travesty' as a generalized pejorative; while in fact this fine old word finds sharper application in the description of the Shakespearean 'travesty plays', i.e. in which one or more characters cross-dress: most often women as men, although be it remembered that in Shakespeare's time, female parts were played by boys -- ergo a travesty of a travesty -- or if you prefer a more modern spin, a transvestite transvestite.

But my subject here is justice -- not drama -- (or perhaps both.)  Recall the prosecution of Alabama Governor Don Siegelman (allegedly for bribery) by the Bush Justice Department (sic).  This was widely viewed at the time as a political hit job engineered by Karl Rove, and the story even attracted the attention of 60 Minutes.  Well might it be called, in the contemporary sense of the word, a travesty of justice.

But now, we have, seemingly a travesty of the travesty.  One of the hopes among Democrats and Political Progressives, was that an incoming Obama administration would review the case against Siegelman and throw it out.  This did not happen.  Instead, the Justice Department let on to be satisfied with the results in place (Siegelman had already done jail time.)

Nonetheless, help has come from a most unexpected quarter.  Citing the Roberts' Court decision in the Citizen's United case, the Eleventh Circuit Court has apparently agreed to a re-hearing of Siegelman's conviction.  Yet the Obama Justice Department (sic) is arguing for the conviction to stand!

I believe these events taken together more than meet the requirements of iterated travesty.   I also believe that actions like this justify my view (expressed in a recent post) of President Obama as a Republican mole; but I don't demand that my readers subscribe to these, my so intemperate opinions.

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