Sunday, May 23, 2010
ONLY CRIMINALS CARE ABOUT INTEGRITY
Let's just suppose, for argument's sake, that our li'l ol' blog here were being written by a "contrite" defendant. Would his contrition blind him to Tom Corbett's behavior?
Would a contrite defendant not wonder why e-mails and testimony exposing Bill DeWeese's involvement in bonuses, "LCOMM" and the Nader and Romanelli petition challenges didn't lead Corbett to indict DeWeese in connection with bonuses, "LCOMM" and the Nader and Romanelli petition challenges. Mario Cattabiani and Angela Couloumbis of the Philadelphia Inquirer wondered, and we're pretty sure no one's indicted them. (Yet.)
Would a defendant's contrition change the fact that Corbett didn't subpoena House Republicans until at least eight months into his well-publicized, leaky-as-a-sieve investigation, and only after after critical editorials appeared on Capitolwire and in The Morning Call? That he and his campaign manager met secretly with John Perzel just weeks before the subpoenas were issued? Or that Corbett himself green-lighted a computer changeover months before issuing the subpoenas? The reporters who noted these curious facts are not convicted felons. (Yet.)
Would a contrite defendant fail to notice that Corbett sent agents from the Attorney General's office to intimidate a state representative who criticized him in a newspaper article? Chris Brennan of the Philadelphia Daily News noticed, and he's not a criminal defendant. (Yet.)
And we suppose nobody but a unrepentant defendant would wonder how Corbett's investigation of the Senate Republicans failed to uncover the campaign operation Jane Orie allegedly ran out of her district office? Laura Vecsey of the Patriot-News wonders, and Corbett hasn't charged her with a felony. (Yet.)
The hundreds of phone calls between Corbett's state staff, on state phones during state time, and campaign workers on their campaign-paid phones, would be of no interest to a contrite defendant? Matt Kemeney of the Patriot-News seems interested, and he's neither a contrite nor unrepentant convict. (Yet.)
If Corbett thinks its okay to put his critics in jail as long as he's convicted them of a real crime first, how short a slide is it to pursuing criminal charges against people because they are critics? Keep in mind, Brett Cott was on record calling Corbett's investigation a "witch hunt" nine months before he was arrested, and a month before Bill DeWeese fired him.
We are outraged, of course, by Corbett's attempt to learn the identity of a critic in order to punish the critic with jail time. But we are baffled by his argument that anything on this blog demonstrates a "lack of contrition." Does contrition make you stupid?
Thanks again to "TN2010" for the illustration.