Tuesday Open Thread

“One change always leaves the way open for the establishment of others.”

–Niccolo Machiavelli

6 Community Comments, Facebook Comments

  1. Rockhound says:

    Over the weekend, one Stephen Varela was selected to fill the vacancy on the state board of education for CO-3 created by Joyce Rankin's resignation.  

    The appointee recently was defeated in a run for state senate in SD-3.  His campaign was marred by allegations of campaign finance violations:  

    https://www.chieftain.com/story/news/2022/09/18/did-state-senate-candidate-stephen-varela-violate-campaign-finance-laws/69499158007/ 

    The day after the election, he resigned from his position as president of a troubled local charter school:  

    https://www.chieftain.com/story/news/2022/11/10/senate-candidate-stephen-varela-resigns-from-chavez-huerta-board/69635865007/ 

    Great choice, vacancy committee.  

  2. ParkHill says:

    Conspiracy Law. via EmptyWheel.

    CONSPIRACY LAW – EIGHT THINGS YOU NEED TO KNOW.

    One: Co-conspirators don’t have to explicitly agree to conspire & there doesn’t need to be a written agreement; in fact, they almost never explicitly agree to conspire & it would be nuts to have a written agreement!

    Two: Conspiracies can have more than one object- i.e. conspiracy to defraud U.S. and to obstruct justice. The object is the goal. Members could have completely different reasons (motives) for wanting to achieve that goal.

    Three: All co-conspirators have to agree on at least one object of the conspiracy.

    Four: Co-conspirators can use multiple means to carry out the conspiracy, i.e., releasing stolen emails, collaborating on fraudulent social media ops, laundering campaign contributions.

    Five: Co-conspirators don’t have to know precisely what the others are doing, and, in large conspiracies, they rarely do.

    Six: Once someone is found to have knowingly joined a conspiracy, he/she is responsible for all acts of other co-conspirators.

    Seven: Statements of any co-conspirator made to further the conspiracy may be introduced into evidence against any other co-conspirator.

    Eight: Overt Acts taken in furtherance of a conspiracy need not be illegal. A POTUS’ public statement that “Russia is a hoax,” e.g., might not be illegal (or even make any sense), but it could be an overt act in furtherance of a conspiracy to obstruct justice.

  3. ParkHill says:

    Republicans Deserve George Santos. Josh Marshall at TPM

    Santos scams dog owner veteran.

    "With this latest chapter the Santos story has taken on a new level of absurdity for me. He’s like the Zelig of evil or the Forest Gump of conmen. The guy is only 34 years old. How many people did he cheat, or steal from or stiff on a debt or con? Will people still be coming forward a year from now?"

    Santos waves off Osthoff because he and his charity’s level of integrity is so high they can’t be allowing Osthoff to ride with Sapphire to the vet. Then Santos says Friends of Pets United is a 501c3 and like every 501c3 they have to go through exacting audits. But remember that reporting has shown that Friends of Pets United was not a 501c3. While it’s difficult to prove a negative, we can be pretty certain that Friends of Pets United didn’t exist at all. But it was definitely not a 501c3. So while scamming this guy out of the $3000 raised to help save Sapphire’s life Santos is bullying the guy about the sheer magnitude of his integrity. This is deep level sociopathy. But even that doesn’t quite capture it.

    This isn’t outrage talking. It’s something between bafflement and fascination. I know there are terrible people out there and people like Santos who to me is a sort of ridiculous terrible. But so many scams and it never caught up to him? He goes from pocketing charitable contributions to raising millions and winning a House seat?

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