TWO LINKS FROM VOLOKH

In which it is detailed how much violence occurred during mainly peaceful BLM demonstrations and how relatively sporadic police overreaction was.

In which a previously ignored ground for impeachment is argued.

73 Responses

  1. I have added an Open Thread for our convenience. These two recent Volokh articles are of current interest.

    Like

    • In Supreme Court news:

      In Terry v. United States, the justices agreed to weigh in on a technical sentencing issue that has significant implications for thousands of inmates: whether a group of defendants who were sentenced for low-level crack-cocaine offenses before Congress enacted the Fair Sentencing Act of 2010 are eligible for resentencing under the First Step Act of 2018. The Fair Sentencing Act reduced (but did not eliminate) the disparity in sentences for convictions involving crack and powder cocaine, and the First Step Act made the Fair Sentencing Act retroactive. The specific question that the court agreed to decide is whether the changes made by the First Step Act extend to inmates convicted of the most minor crack-cocaine offenses.

      In a “friend of the court” brief urging the justices to grant review in another case presenting the same question, the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers explained that the lower courts are divided on this question; as a result, NACDL wrote, Supreme Court review is necessary “to prevent thousands of predominately Black defendants from being forced to spend years longer in prison than identically situated defendants” elsewhere in the country “and to ensure that Congress’s goal of alleviating the racial disparities in sentencing caused by the 1986 law’s harsh sentencing regime is realized.”

      Like

    • Mark:

      So has Volokh convinced you of that which I was unable to convince you?

      Like

      • Put it this way – I am no longer persuaded of Biden’s position. So while I do think Trump would have called in the NG right away for a left winger mob [BLM, Antifa, whatever], I don’t think the bulk of the invidious comparison sticks now and I do think the hand wringing, of which I was guilty of partially accepting, was caused by myopia fed by black victim politics. I can now focus my internal response more like Joe’s: Trump was the immediate problem here.

        Like

        • Mark, Were you surprised that people trespassed into the Capital last week?

          Like

        • Mark, Were you surprised that people trespassed into the Capital last week?

          I was.

          I also will distinguish “trespass”, which applies to crossing the barrier, from “burglary”, which applies to breaking and entering the building with criminal intent. I was merely surprised by the trespass. I was shocked at the burglary.

          Like

        • Fair enough and your distinct designation is spot on.

          If you were surprised would it be fair to think most people were surprised, because I would. I also don’t think Trump “incited” them either and I think he was as surprised as anyone.

          Like

        • I wasn’t *totally* surprised. I was surprised, didn’t really expect it, but I wasn’t surprised at that and wouldn’t be surprised if there was something more. As the left has often pointed out, when people feel disenfranchised and as if they have no support or resources or legitimate avenues of remediation, they improvise.

          Like

        • Mark:

          Put it this way – I am no longer persuaded of Biden’s position.

          So what do you think of him (and the wider media) pushing it as a narrative? Isn’t he/it stoking resentments and creating divisions based on an untruth?

          Like

        • So what do you think of him (and the wider media) pushing it as a narrative?

          He and they should learn some objectivity.

          Isn’t he/it stoking resentments and creating divisions based on an untruth?

          Half truth. I come down on the other side of their half truth. That is, they seem to want less police presence at BLM demonstrations to curb the bad actors, and point to the shallow police presence at the Capitol.

          I want more police presence at any demonstration large enough to mask bad actors.

          I am going to put that to Biden in a correspondence, probably an email after the Inauguration, and see what response I get.

          Like

        • Mark:

          That is, they seem to want less police presence at BLM demonstrations to curb the bad actors, and point to the shallow police presence at the Capitol.

          How do you get that out of what he said? He was complaining about an alleged lack of “equal justice”, not too much or too little for one group or the other.

          I want more police presence at any demonstration large enough to mask bad actors.

          Fine, but Biden is telling blacks that they are not getting “equal justice” based on the way police treated BLM rioters vs they way they treated the Capitol invaders. As Volokh demonstrated, that is plainly untrue. So, why isn’t this an example of Biden stoking resentments and divisions based on an untruth?

          Like

        • I think you moved the goal posts ever so slightly. The comparisons I heard were 1] the Capitol invaders to the tear gassing of people so Trump could get his bible shot and 2] the massing of armed officers on the Lincoln Memorial during a peaceful protest on the Mall. The only clear message would be that law enforcement has to be ready, in force, to quell violence whenever there is a mass demonstration of any kind. We cannot assume all are peaceful, in the real world we know that mass demonstrations always are possible and unwitting cover for bad actors.

          I want more police presence at any demonstration large enough to mask bad actors.

          Like

        • Mark:

          The comparisons I heard were 1] the Capitol invaders to the tear gassing of people so Trump could get his bible shot and 2] the massing of armed officers on the Lincoln Memorial during a peaceful protest on the Mall.

          These were his exact words:

          No one can tell me that if it had been a group of Black Lives Matter protesting yesterday, they wouldn’t have been treated very very differently. We saw a clear failure to carry out equal justice.

          I think you are reading more into what he said – a lot more – than what he actually said. On its face he was simply claiming that one action was treated differently than the other, and the implication was that it was due to racism.

          BTW, even if he had mentioned the massing of armed officers at the Lincoln Memorial, the suggested comparison still wouldn’t be apt because that came after the BLM riots had already broken out and after memorials on the Mall had already been vandalized. The protesting and rioting began in DC on the night of May 29th. On May 31st the National Parks Service tweeted about vandalism that had taken place on the Mall. By the night of May 31 the streets around the White House were ablaze, and St. Johns Church had been set on fire. It was then on the evening of the 1st that the rioters/protestors were cleared from around the White House and Trump took his infamous bible photo in front of the church. The next day, on June 2, the National Guard was called in and took position in various places across the city, including on the Lincoln Memorial steps in preparation for another planned protest on the Mall, where the now much discussed photo was taken.

          So 4 days after the BLM riots started and the Mall began to be vandalized, and 2 days after St. Johns Church was set on fire, the National Guard showed up on the Lincoln Memorial steps. I don’t see how any reasonable person can conclude from this that the presence of the National Guard on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial is evidence that BLM protestors were treated more harshly than the Capitol invaders (on whom the National Guard was brought in within hours of their invasion), much less that it was so because of the color of their skin, which was the implication of what Biden (and so many others) are saying.

          The only clear message would be that law enforcement has to be ready, in force, to quell violence whenever there is a mass demonstration of any kind.

          I know what you want the message to be. But we are talking about the message that Biden was actually sending. He was sending the message that black protestors do not get “equal justice” relative to the Capitol invaders. That is an inflammatory lie, and the fact that it is Biden instead of Trump telling the inflammatory lie doesn’t – or at least shouldn’t – make it any more acceptable.

          Like

  2. Good piece. I had forgotten about the demonstrations near the White House and how everyone laughed when Trump was moved to a secure location.

    Like

  3. Anyone else having trouble making an estimated tax payment?

    IRS doesn’t believe my address on verifications.

    Why is our government so incompetent?

    Like

    • Is this people or data systems?

      Big data systems are easy to screw up without knowing. There are usually multiple vendors or sources for data pieces, like address verification. Computers were supposed to make things easier but have they really?

      Like

    • “Why is our government so incompetent?”

      because of tax cuts, silly!

      Like

    • I still do them via paper/US Mail.

      I was unable to get the electronic payment system to authorize me because one of it’s validation methods is name & address on a cell phone bill and my cell phone isn’t tied to my residential address.

      I also photocopy everyone and put it in a file with all my other tax documents so that I can affirmatively provide evidence that I paid it. Guilty until proven innocent and all that.

      Like

  4. Laying the groundwork for the new narrative on the Corona virus:

    I feel like there is a split between people who want to say “COVID will be totally cured real soon now, Trump is gone!” and “No! Lockdowns forever! DISEASE IS EVERYWHERE ALL THE TIME!! Plus shutting down the economy is great for the environment!”

    Like

  5. If the Washington Post had covered the months long Portland riots the way that they are covering the 6 hour Capitol riots, then Trump would have been reelected.

    That, above all else, explains the framing you are seeing with BLM vs Trump supporters.

    Like

    • jnc:

      If the Washington Post had covered the months long Portland riots the way that they are covering the 6 hour Capitol riots, then Trump would have been reelected.

      Well, it probably would have taken more than just the WaPo, but otherwise that is exactly correct. The fact that they are also stoking racial resentment and hatred by lying about the relative law enforcement action in the two events just makes it all the more galling.

      These people are creating an environment ripe for a civil war. Seriously.

      But at least Trump is gone. Priorities.

      Like

    • It does feel very much like the fix is in. Media, politicians, tech, all colluding or just organically setting a narrative because, as a group, this is how they want things framed. Time to start checking out cabins in the woods.

      Like

  6. So they took down Parler and now everyone is going to encrypted communications.

    https://www.vox.com/recode/22226618/what-is-signal-whatsapp-telegram-download-encrypted-messaging

    Somehow, I don’t think this will help law enforcement prevent/manage violent demonstrations.

    Like

    • Most of the coordination for the Capitol Hill riot was done via Facebook. It’s all nonsense.

      What was on Parler was people saying: “Hang Mike Pence!” and other violent fantasy stuff, and not that much of it. And based on the things the chattering classes say, the problem with Parler is not that there was any real coordination of violence, but that they weren’t censoring QAnon and were letting people say “Stop the Steal!” and share all sorts of legitimate and insane theories of the election being stolen . . . it was about the topic, about letting conspiracy theorists consort and feed off each other, because then that gives people “motivation” to go do bad things.

      And what’s the point? Again, actual coordination was one on Facebook, and more can be done on Facebook by people just watching their language.

      I don’t know that anything is going to help law enforcement. Gab and the comments section of various conservative sites are being infilitrated by trolls purposely making comments and posts threatening violence, so they can screenshot and then send it off to ISPs and storage providers saying: “Look! Conservative-thing X is full of violent white supremacists!” When you have so many people sewing disinformation, and so many people making hollow, keyboard-warrior style threats . . . The best solution for law-enforcement is to just shut off all communications between human beings. 😉

      Like

  7. Brent and Scott, what do you think of Gensler at SEC?

    Pros and cons?

    Like

    • Mark:

      ..what do you think of Gensler at SEC?

      I don’t really have an opinion either way. I’m not a fan of a lot of what he did at the CFTC, and the way he spoke about the derivatives market (“wild west”, “murky market”) in the wake of 2008 just pushed the false narrative of time rather than clarify for people what actually happened. But is he better or worse for the SEC than anyone else who might get appointed? I don’t really know.

      Like

  8. Pretty good thread hammering the NeverTrump hypocrites at National Review:

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Overreaction? My first reaction is “these people are crazy and delusional” but on second thought . . . yeah, probably smart.

    Like

  10. Ran across this by accident on Twitter:

    But, you know, deplatform Parler and everything else because they allow violent speech and incitement, or something.

    Like

  11. Greenwald goes full Scott in his latest:

    “That is because the dominant strain of American liberalism is not economic socialism but political authoritarianism. Liberals now want to use the force of corporate power to silence those with different ideologies. They are eager for tech monopolies not just to ban accounts they dislike but to remove entire platforms from the internet. They want to imprison people they believe helped their party lose elections, such as Julian Assange, even if it means creating precedents to criminalize journalism.”

    https://greenwald.substack.com/p/how-silicon-valley-in-a-show-of-monopolistic

    Note the evolution of the no fly list from a proactive measure about keeping terrorists from blowing up planes to a generic punishment for people you don’t like:

    “On Tuesday, House Homeland Security Chair Bennie Thompson (D-MS) urged that GOP Sens. Ted Cruz and Josh Hawley “be put on the no-fly list,””

    Also worth reading for those who haven’t yet:

    https://greenwald.substack.com/p/violence-in-the-capitol-dangers-in-bbe

    Liked by 1 person

  12. Good read for the view from the other side. Less hysterical than most.

    Liked by 1 person

Be kind, show respect, and all will be right with the world.

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: