'A Game Not Worth The Candle'

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'A Game Not Worth The Candle'

Postby toucana on September 24th, 2018, 5:46 am 

"Le jeu ne vaut pas la chandelle” - (The game is not worth the candle).
Randle Cotgrave - Dictionarie of the French and English Tongues (1611)

The French word Jeu means a ‘hand of cards’ here . The sense is quite simple. You are playing with a hand so weak, you won’t even recoup the farthings you paid for the candles to light the gaming table.

As of this morning Brett Kavanaugh’s nomination for the SCOTUS is in this ’no-win’ scenario, after multiple new female accusers began to come forward with fresh allegations of sexual misconduct against him.

One ugly aspect of this scenario is that senior GOP Judiciary committee members like Chuck Grassley, Orinn Hatch and Lindsey Graham were apparently aware that these new allegations were coming down the road at them, and they frantically tried to force Kavanaugh’s confirmation hearings through Congress last week, before the public became aware of them too.

All that changes now. A 53 year old woman called Deborah Ramirez has come forward to allege that Brett Kavanaugh sexually exposed himself to her at a drunken dormitory party in Yale university in the Freshman year 1983-4.

https://www.newyorker.com/news/news-desk/senate-democrats-investigate-a-new-allegation-of-sexual-misconduct-from-the-supreme-court-nominee-brett-kavanaughs-college-years-deborah-ramirez

Meanwhile the attorney Michael Avenatti says he is representing multiple new sources who claim Brett Kavanaugh and his prep-school friend Mark Judge were responsible for a string of gang rapes against young women whom they targeted with drink and drugs and then subsequently assaulted.

https://www.politico.com/story/2018/09/23/second-woman-assault-kavanaugh-837678

Brett Kavanaugh is denying all the newest claims, but his nomination is now in dire peril. His wisest course of action at this point would be to fold his SCOTUS nomination immediately, and hope that the FBI don’t start a formal investigation of the latest claims.
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Re: 'A Game Not Worth The Candle'

Postby Serpent on September 24th, 2018, 9:58 am 

If they dropped it upon his withdrawal, that would seem obviously political. Once the allegations have been made, doesn't the FBI have to proceed with an investigation, regardless of what job the accused wants?
Or would the case be outside their jurisdiction if it didn't involve a SCOTUS nominee?
What's the legal position in this kind of charge?
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Re: 'A Game Not Worth The Candle'

Postby toucana on September 24th, 2018, 11:13 am 

It’s complex. There are state charges that could be filed in some instances, and there are Federal charges that might be invoked in others (e.g. crimes that cross state lines, or criminal actions against Federal employees).

The FBI are already involved to the extent of carrying out background checks on candidates nominated for Federal office/employement, but those are in the form of confidential briefing reports passed to the White House and DOJ, rather than as active criminal investigations by the FBI.

In the case of the original allegations against Brett Kavanaugh by Dr. Christine Blasey Ford which date back to when when he was still at Georgetown Prep school, there is no statute of limitations in Maryland relating to a felony offence of sexual assault. There is however a statute of limitations on misdemeanour assault within that jursidiction. So there would probably be a large legal argument over which state charges (if any) could be brought at this stage.

https://lawandcrime.com/high-profile/if-the-allegations-are-true-could-brett-kavanaugh-face-criminal-charges-maybe/

The legal calculus has changed yet again with news that Dr Christine Blasey Ford has received death threats, and has had to move house since agreeing to come forward as a witness to Senate committee hearings, which once again re-involves the FBI in potential issues of witness intimidation and obstruction of justice charges.

The bottom line is that if you are having to decide whether a guy belongs on the bench of the Supreme Court of the USA, or on a sex-offenders register, then they probably shouldn’t be on the candidate short-list in the first place.
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Re: 'A Game Not Worth The Candle'

Postby TheVat on September 24th, 2018, 12:27 pm 

I hear Merrick Garland is still available. :-)
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Re: 'A Game Not Worth The Candle'

Postby Serpent on September 24th, 2018, 2:10 pm 

The bottom line is that if you are having to decide whether a guy belongs on the bench of the Supreme Court of the USA, or on a sex-offenders register, then they probably shouldn’t be on the candidate short-list in the first place.

That's one bottom line that we already knew before the sex offenses (which are becoming par for men in prominent positions in every walk of life, apparently).
But it's not the only one that matters. The victims who finally got up the courage to come forward (I'm only guessing that's because the stakes had become too high: This man will have the power to make and break laws that protect the same people he's always treated with utmost contempt. We can't let that happen.) are still in danger: his friends and supporters and accessories are still in positions of power, and now the gun-totin yahoos whose flag-bearer is royally pissed off have another new target. This mess is a long way from over.
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Re: 'A Game Not Worth The Candle'

Postby bangstrom on September 25th, 2018, 2:35 am 

Braininvat » September 24th, 2018, 11:27 am wrote:I hear Merrick Garland is still available. :-)


Allowing a vote for Garland would right some wrongs and get the Republicans out of the mess they have got themselves into but it will never happen. The Republicans remind me of the cartoon character who walks off the edge of a cliff and keeps on walking not knowing there is nothing beneath his feet.
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Re: 'A Game Not Worth The Candle'

Postby TheVat on September 25th, 2018, 9:43 am 

Yep. The spin on "Renate alumnus" would support that.

https://slate.com/news-and-politics/201 ... -prep.html
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Re: 'A Game Not Worth The Candle'

Postby toucana on September 25th, 2018, 11:25 am 

You do wonder if they knew what alumnus originally meant in Latin ?
I guess they probably stopped teaching classical Latin and Greek in prep schools some while ago.

But even so, given that Kavanaugh is a member of the Roman Catholic church which still uses Latin as a liturgical language, (and as the the official language of the Vatican city), you might expect him to know that the pristine meaning of alumnus is 'nursling', or 'one who suckled at the breast of..'

From the Latin verb alo-alere-alui-alitum meaning 'to nourish', with a Greek termination -μενοσ.
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Re: 'A Game Not Worth The Candle'

Postby toucana on September 26th, 2018, 3:25 pm 

Michael Avenatti’s client has come forward and has made a statement identifying herself as Julie Swetnick.

https://www.politico.com/story/2018/09/26/third-kavanaugh-accuser-steps-forward-843086

In her declaration, Julie Swetnick said she graduated from Gaithersburg High School. A spokesperson for Montgomery County Public Schools confirmed she attended the high school and graduated in 1980.

She is Federal employee who has previously worked in the IRS, and in the US Mint, which means she has previously undergone multiple FBI background checks and has previously received what is known as ‘Public Trust Clearance’- a special form of vetting for employees in judicous roles that involve managing public finances and assets.

She claims that she attended at least 10 parties in the Washington DC area in the early 1980s at which Brett Kavanaugh and his school-friend Mark Judge were both in attendance, usually in a highly drunken and sexually aggressive state.

It is the following details in her statement that will cause most consternation:
12.     I also witnessed efforts by Mark Judge, Brett Kavanaugh and others to cause girls to become inebriated and disoriented so they could then be “gang raped” in a side room or a bedroom by a “train” of numerous boys. I have a firm recollection of seeing boys lined up outside rooms at many of these parties waiting for their “turn” with a girl inside the room. These boys included Mark Judge and Brett Kavanaugh.

13.     In approximately 1982, I became the victim of one of these “gang” or “train” where Mark Judge and Brett Kavanaugh were present. Shortly after the incident, I shared what had transpired with at least two other people. During the incident, I was incapacitated without my consent and unable to fight the boys off raping me. I believe I was drugged using Quaaludes or something similar placed in what I was drinking.

https://www.dailykos.com/stories/2018/9/26/1798852/-A-new-Kavanaugh-accuser-comes-forward-with-extremely-troubling-allegations
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Re: 'A Game Not Worth The Candle'

Postby toucana on September 28th, 2018, 4:11 am 

Rachel Mitchell, the Arizona prosecutor brought in by the GOP Senate Judiciary committee members to question Dr. Christine Blasey Ford yesterday, may have inadvertently nailed the exact date and location of the party cited by Dr Ford at which she said she was assaulted in the summer of 1982.

https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/2018/09/27/kavanaugh-is-pressed-key-july-entry-his-calendar-only-point/?noredirect=on&utm_term=.fca90a773537

Brett Kavanaugh had submitted contemporaneous hand-written calendars detailing his day-by-day activities back in the 1980s as evidence of his innocence. Rachel Mitchell first highlighted Kavanaugh’s suggestion that any such party would most plausibly have occured at a w/e because of weekday work committments, and that all his week-ends were accounted for by other documented activities in his calendars.

Rachel Mitchell then actually brought attention to a particular calendar entry about a social gathering listed on 1st July 1982 - which happens to be a Thursday - which referred to a get together at ‘Timmy’s” with “Judge, PJ, Bernie and ‘Squi’ . Timmy turns out to be Timothy Patrick Gaudette who was living at an address that falls right within the cachement area cited by Dr Ford, and ‘Squi’ was the nickname of a male school-friend of Kavanaugh’s who Ford was dating at the time. ‘PJ’ is P.J. Smyth, and ‘Judge’ is Mark Judge, the alcoholic school-buddy of Kavanaugh currently hiding out in Delaware whom the GOP Senate Judiciary majority members declined to subpoena for questioning.

What Rachel Mitchell missed was the significance of the fact that 4th of July is a public holiday in USA that fell upon a Sunday in 1982, so Friday 2nd July was treated as a surrogate public holiday by many, making Thursday 1st July the effective start of a long holiday weekend - undercutting Kavanaugh’s argument that such a party wouldn’t have occured on a week-day. She also apparently missed the significance of the fact that Kavanaugh’s own calendar tabulation of who was present at the gathering matches that of Dr Ford, who said that Kavanaugh, Judge and PJ , along with her male friend ‘Squi’ were present - and did so before Kavanaugh ever produced his 1982 calendar in court.

GOP Judiciary members apparently realised that Rachel Mitchell had trodden on a rather large rake, because the chairman abruptly cut across her line of questioning and shut it off. The Arizona prosecutor was then yanked from cross-examination duties, and didn’t get to utter another word throughout the remainder of the session, as GOP members such as Lindsey Graham took over, and proceedings descended into a partisan squabbling.
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Re: 'A Game Not Worth The Candle'

Postby TheVat on September 28th, 2018, 9:46 am 

Good catch. Graham's spittle-flying rant will be receiving an Oscar nomination, most likely. I remember when Graham used to have a spine, but he's entirely owned by Trump, Inc. now.
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Re: 'A Game Not Worth The Candle'

Postby toucana on September 28th, 2018, 11:39 am 


Brett Kavanaugh's testimony was turning into the sort of old-fashioned Hollywood court-room melodrama where I was half-expecting a reprise of this Tom Cruise v Jack Nicholson moment in A Few Good Men
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Re: 'A Game Not Worth The Candle'

Postby toucana on September 29th, 2018, 1:07 pm 

Law enforcement agencies use polygraphs to test the credibility of witnesses and criminal defendants. Those agencies also use polygraphs to “screen applicants for security clearances so that they may be deemed suitable for work in critical law enforcement, defense, and intelligence collection roles.” The Government has satisfactorily explained how polygraph examinations serve law enforcement purposes.

(Circuit Judge Brett Kavanaugh - Opinion in appeal of Ms Kathryn Sack - May 2016)

Things you might wish you hadn't said.

https://www.huffingtonpost.co.uk/entry/brett-kavanaugh-polygraph-christine-blasey-ford_us_5bad52cbe4b0425e3c21f60a
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Re: 'A Game Not Worth The Candle'

Postby toucana on September 29th, 2018, 9:38 pm 

NBC are reporting that Donald Trump secretly attempted to cripple the latest FBI re-investigation of his SCOTUS nominee Brett Kavanaugh before it had even begun.

https://www.nbcnews.com/politics/politics-news/white-house-limits-scope-fbi-s-investigation-allegations-against-brett-n915061

According to this report, the FBI were privately forbidden to talk to Julie Swetnick about her claims that Brett Kavanaugh and his friend Mark Judge attended parties at which young women were drugged and gang-raped.

The FBI officers were also allegedly told they could not speak to other potential derogatory witnesses about Kavanaugh's drinking habits.

Shortly after the bi-partisan compromise based on Senator Flake's proposal was originally announced on Friday, MSNBC carried this interview with a former senior FBI officer Frank Figliuzzi which spelled out what a thorough week-long FBI investigation ought to involve:



https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9gwNM7Li5f8
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Re: 'A Game Not Worth The Candle'

Postby hyksos on September 30th, 2018, 4:16 am 

Brett Kavanaugh sat in front of the nation and declared that the allegations were a vast leftwing conspiracy orchestrated by the Clintons attempting to get revenge on him (for his legal behavior in the 1990s with Ken Starr.)

This conspiracy makes no sense in terms of a timeline.

Blasey-Ford revealed the details of the drunken 1982 attack long before Kavanaugh had been selected as a nominee for the Supreme Court. A vast leftwing conspiracy would have waited for Kavanaugh to be selected, and THEN dug up Blasey-Ford and coached on her on what to say to whom to maximally damage the nominee's life. Blasey-Ford named Kavanaugh by name. That is to say, she was not randomly targeting an entire bucketlist of possible Trump nominees, it was always and only Kavanaugh.

Furthermore, an FBI investigation could plausibly reveal that Blasey-Ford relayed the attack to her husband and therapist in 2012. In 2012 Donald Trump's political career was little more than a twinkle in a distant galaxy.

Blasey-Ford placed a third man in the room during the attack. She named that third man by name. The third man in the room was Mark Judge. Mark Judge is not at his home. He has been placed in a tourist cabin in a remote coastal area in Delaware. Far away from cameras, far away from the media, and far away from the long arm of the FBI; this is where Mark Judge has been "hiding out" during the course of Kavanaugh's confirmation hearings. This stinks to high heaven. It is as if the Republicans are hiding Mark Judge from the world.
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Re: 'A Game Not Worth The Candle'

Postby Forest_Dump on September 30th, 2018, 6:28 am 

I won't speculate on the charges, etc. As noted above, they seem to be increasingly common on some prominent men (and the odd woman) but don't often get verified. To me, however, what has stood out has been his rant regarding the political motivations of these charges and the accompanying anger and hatred. At this point any illusion that he might ever be able to hear a case with political leanings or brought by someone from the "left" seems to be gone. In fact, this episode seriously challenges the very idea that the SCOTUS can be considered able to look at laws in an unbiased, nonpartisan manner. So, if SCOTUS is clearly a political/partisan position, that should raise the question of whether it should be an elected position and have a defined term.
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Re: 'A Game Not Worth The Candle'

Postby Serpent on September 30th, 2018, 11:34 am 

That whole exhibition was embarrassing. The G?OP seem to have shed its last vestiges of both reality and shame. (An investigation limited to one week and no witness questioning. Not the FBI's style, surely.)
I expect a few more desertions/ leapings overboard, but no substantial change of direction: it's too late.
Slow-motion train-wreck.... Sad...
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Re: 'A Game Not Worth The Candle'

Postby TheVat on September 30th, 2018, 12:32 pm 

Forest_Dump » September 30th, 2018, 3:28 am wrote:I won't speculate on the charges, etc. As noted above, they seem to be increasingly common on some prominent men (and the odd woman) but don't often get verified. To me, however, what has stood out has been his rant regarding the political motivations of these charges and the accompanying anger and hatred. At this point any illusion that he might ever be able to hear a case with political leanings or brought by someone from the "left" seems to be gone. In fact, this episode seriously challenges the very idea that the SCOTUS can be considered able to look at laws in an unbiased, nonpartisan manner. So, if SCOTUS is clearly a political/partisan position, that should raise the question of whether it should be an elected position and have a defined term.


The basic purpose of SCOTUS is to be a non-partisan non-political high court. Most justices, after joining the Court, do let themselves be shaped somewhat by the austere tone of the institution. Kennedy, for example, came in as a conservative Republican, and a Catholic, but was able to set all that aside on many important rulings and wrote opinions that were not mired in ideology but a jurist's understanding of the Constitution and settled precedent. Kavanaugh, whatever his past misdeeds, has revealed a deeply partisan quality, and lack of judicial calm and dignity, that would make him unsuited for the SCOTUS. He is a far cry from Anthony Kennedy, who he would replace. There are literally hundreds of candidates for the job far better suited. The current partisan circus is a disgrace to democracy and to the Constitution.
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Re: 'A Game Not Worth The Candle'

Postby toucana on October 2nd, 2018, 7:41 am 

This one is pretty easy to check out:

https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2018-10-01/kavanaugh-college-visit-to-bar-erupted-in-fight-classmate-says-jmqwga1s

A calendar of concerts published in the Courant newspaper in Hartford, Connecticut, shows that UB40 played in New Haven Connecticut on Sept. 25 1985, a date which happened to fall on a Wednesday (so much for never drinking on a weekday evening).

Chris Dudley who was the third man involved in the drunken brawl at Demery’s beer & pizza bar was arrested and taken away by the New Haven cops, so there is a contemporaneous police report, a copy of which has been obtained by the NYT who say four other people were questioned.

Chris Dudley was a 6’ 11” center star basketball player for the Yale team who later had a successful 16 year NBA career before switching to politics and making an unsuccessful run to become Governor of Oregon in 2010.

The incident would become a hot topic of conversation among the other members of the basketball team because its star at the time, Dudley, was involved, according to another team member.

Team members were given a harsh lecture by coaches the next day telling them to avoid the bar, said the former player in an interview. He asked not to be named because of the intense politics surrounding the nomination hearing.

Charles Ludington, a former Yale basketball player who’s now a history professor at North Carolina State University and provided the original account of Brett Kavanaugh’s part in this drunken bar brawl says he has now been contacted by FBI officers.
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Re: 'A Game Not Worth The Candle'

Postby hyksos on October 2nd, 2018, 11:33 pm 

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