I'm sure there are those who say that the Rule of Law died a long time ago in these United States, but I think it's been largely intact until a couple of years ago. Now, though . . . I'm not so sure.
Two recent examples have sorely tested my faith in our laws. The first, and most blatant, was the refusal to prosecute Hillary Clinton for her breach of security laws and regulations. As Austin Bay notes:
PRN means Platte River Networks, the outfit who Hillary hired to handle her rogue server system. The Apple MacBook mentioned in the timeline contained backup copies of Hillary’s emails.
- Early 2014—Monica Hanley advises Undisclosed PRN Staff Member to wipe the Apple MacBook clean after uploading Hillary’s emails to the new PRN server but he forgets to do it
- Early 2014—Undisclosed PRN Staff Member mails Apple MacBook back to Clinton and it is promptly lost
- Dec 2014—Hillary delivers 55,000 emails to State Department
- Dec 2014/Jan 2015—Heather Samuelson and Cheryl Mills request emails be deleted from their computer using BleachBit
- Dec 2014/Jan 2015—“Unknown Clinton staff member” instructs PRN to remove archives of Clinton emails from PRN server
- Mar 2, 2015—NYT releases an article showing that Hillary used a personal email server in violation of State Department rules
- Mar 4, 2015—Hillary receives subpoena from House Select Committee on Benghazi instructing her to preserve and deliver all emails from her personal servers
- Mar 25, 2015—Undisclosed PRN Staff Member has a conference call with “President Clinton’s Staff”
- Mar 25-31, 2015—Undisclosed PRN Staff Member has “oh shit” moment and realizes he forgot to wipe Hillary’s email archive from the PRN server back in December…which he promptly does using BleachBit despite later admitting he “was aware of the existence of the preservation request and the fact that it meant he should not disturb Clinton’s e-mail data on the PRN server”
. . .
- Jun 2016—FBI discovers that Undisclosed PRN Staff Member forgot to erase 940 emails from the gmail account he created to help with the PRN server upload
Now tell me, Comey. Do you really think (as Zerohedge says, tongue in cheek) “Mills, Hillary, President Clinton’s Office were all blissfully unaware of the actions of their rogue IT guy”? You and your agency know Hillary failed to turn over work-related emails to the Committee. You think these curiouser and curiouser shenanigans were all accidental? Are you and Alice living happily together in Wonderland?
There's more at the link. It's a pretty damning indictment of the FBI and the Justice Department for the way they (mis)managed the Clinton investigation and appear to have displayed what can only be either partisanship, or rank incompetence, in their handling of the entire affair. What price the rule of law when those officially responsible for its enforcement fail to do their jobs? (Meanwhile, of course, others responsible for its enforcement continue to selectively make all sorts of problems for those who aren't in political favor.)
The other example is selective enforcement of our laws by immigration authorities.
The Obama administration is delaying deportation proceedings for recent immigrants in cities across the United States, allowing more than 56,000 ... to remain in the country legally for several more years.
Again, more at the link.
Laws are meant to be universally enforced, not selectively applied. I swore the same oath of office used by members of the FBI and every other Federal law enforcement agency:
I [name] do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic; that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the same; that I take this obligation freely, without any mental reservation or purpose of evasion; and that I will well and faithfully discharge the duties of the office on which I am about to enter. So help me God.
I meant my word, and I kept that oath of office during (and since) my term of service. However, it seems that many (not least FBI Director Comey) are honoring it more in the breach than in the observance.
How can any honorable person swear such an oath, then flagrantly disregard it at the direction of those in political power? Isn't the only honorable response to resign one's office rather than be a willing accomplice to its corruption? Or am I hopelessly naive and out of touch with reality? I hope and pray that I'm not, and the example of some friends and colleagues persuades me that there are many like me in Federal service. However, sadly, there are many more who don't exhibit the same moral character.
So, is the Rule of Law dead in the USA? Or is it merely in abeyance for a short time until it can be restored? Please let us know your thoughts in Comments. I won't be able to check in often, but I'll look forward to reading the discussion when I have time.