“The rule of law in the U.S. is becoming the rule of lawyers.”
In 1215, on a meadow field known as Runnymede outside the environs of present day London, England’s barons determined to secure once and for all the relationship of a ruler and his people. They secured King John’s signature to the document known as the Magna Carta, a charter that secured various freedoms, but more fundamentally, the principle that the rule of law was ultimately the final adjudicator of all citizens, whether they be king, or commoner. The concept of arbitrary rule was thus consigned to the dustbin of history, in all lands where free men were found.
800 years later, a copy of the Magna Carta lies in the National Archives next to the Declaration of Independence and the U.S. Constitution to remind one of how much is owed to this basic concept of freedom, and the common thread of principles that protect our liberties.
Unfortunately, the number of people who understand and want to protect the concept has dwindled to a pitiful few.
And one of them is definitely NOT the suggested potential anointed leader of the free world, one Hillary Rodham Clinton. In a press conference yesterday the former Secretary of State of the United States and potential future President of the United States reminded all that if rule of law is your ideal, you might want to look for a leader elsewhere. Not that this is new information. The anointed one has been a rogue regarding the rule of law since she stepped onto the national stage some forty years ago as an assistant council on the Watergate committee , and flashed all the characteristics of her royal roguedum for the modern audience in case anyone forgot.
The press conference like all staged Clinton events was supposed to be a means by which Mrs. Clinton could bury any further conversations regarding her recently exposed use of a private e-mail service for both official and unofficial correspondence as Secretary of State, but her performance assured the issues wouldn’t go away anytime soon. The brazen insistence that she had effectively addressed all concerns with her release of a portion of the email stream reminded us what this lawyer seems to be genetically missing – the idea that laws and the rules they engender are for everyone, and the rules for those who would govern particularly sensitivized to reduce the risk of corruption. The Clintons, however, have always held the unique position that laws are arbitrarily interpretable, and that they were always the best positioned as to which ones they would follow and which ones they would skirt. The former President Clinton at least brought his formidable personality and political skill to the game. Poor Hillary has always been the edgier and more adversarially corrupt lawyer to the simplest of ethics, from the lying that led to her expulsion from the Watergate committee, to her role at the Rose Law firm regarding billing and the stonewalling on the subpoenaed records, the dark flailing about with the seamy Whitewater real estate affair as a victim of a far flung conspiracy, the cattle futures nonsensical explanation, and the hypocritical hatchet-job attacks on those that would dare fall under her husband’s lecherous influence all the while proclaiming her role as the Feminist in Chief.
The last 12 years have been a rehearsal for the job she has assumed hers, the Presidency. She carpet bagged a residency in New York State to allow her to be handed the Moynihan Senate seat, ran for President in 2008 only to be swallowed by another more clever actor in Barrack Obama, then took the Foreign Policy role absent from her CV as Secretary of State under President Obama. Having left the various messes behind for her successor John Kerry to deal with, she felt she had managed to position herself as inevitable for the top job.
The old Hillary problem however, her inability to do anything for a reason other than being self serving, simply could not be suppressed even when endowed with the most compliant and willing press. The cracks were finally exposed with the tragedy of Benghazi and top came off with greedy need to make money the only way she has ever understood, having other people set her riches up. The combination of incompetence and shady money deals needed a special capacity to control information and Mrs. Clinton found the perfect solution in likely becoming the first senior government executive to maintain all her interactions on a personal server despite her obvious role as a historical government figure. This ludicrous arrangement allowed her to erase any interactions she felt questionable or averse to the narrative of the most prepared public servant in history. It made any conflicts of interest regarding her actions and the governments and people willing to give the Clintons millions through their foundation difficult if not impossible to trace, All it would take would be for everyone to acquiesce to the idea that Mrs. Clinton could be trusted to protect the people’s business and separate the professional from the personal by her own rules of behavior.
And thus the press conference where she declared public records as the nation’s chief foreign policy representative to be the first in history held privately hostage, secure behind client attorney privilege. She announced that no security breach on a private server was possible because it was physically guarded by the Secret Service, that 30,000 e-mails were destroyed as they related to her yoga schedule or daughter Chelsea’s weeding, or personally intimate interactions with her husband( who unfortunately denied having ever sent more than two e-mails in his life). She declared there were no emails regarding her decisions leading to the Benghazi debacle and she could be trusted on that fact. And she topped it all off, by saying as ‘ I am so forthcoming’, there would be no more access to her records or her server. If you need to have your head explode, I recommend you watch the whole thing. The cliff-notes version however is here, and I suspect that will likely still be enough to have your head explode.
Now the watch begins. I have always predicted that it was very likely Mrs. Clinton would not run for President because of the enormous baggage that would be exposed if she did so, and if she brazenly ran anyway, would show thee same fatal flaws that took her down in 2008. That was before any of this mess.
In the end it always goes back to the rule of law. You pay your taxes because its the law. You don’t discriminate because it’s the law. You don’t steal because it’s the law. You don’t enter a country illegally because it’s the law. You don’t destroy evidence because it’s the law. And it’s the law whether you’re the President the Secretary of State, or just another nondescript schlub. And because the law deals with everyone on equal terms, it is as protective of your rights, as it is the most exalted leader of the land.
Are we going to throw that all away by electing a person that has never had a smidgen of understanding what I am talking about, or why that would even matter? As Mrs. Clinton put so bluntly, “At this point, what difference would it make?”
All the difference in the world.