The I-Won't-Tell-You-Because-If-I-Do-You'll-Skip-It Digest
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From: Peter Langston <psl>
Date: Thu, 24 Sep 98 13:23:22 -0700
Subject: The I-Won't-Tell-You-Because-If-I-Do-You'll-Skip-It Digest
Forwarded-by: Leon Marr <email@example.com>
Re: words that come back to haunt one
Wednesday, September 23, 1998 Published at 19:21 GMT 20:21 UK
Starr faces 'porn' allegation
A German journalist is looking at whether the special prosecutor, Kenneth
Starr, could be prosecuted for publishing "pornographic" material in his
account of President Clinton's affair with Monica Lewinsky.
Wenzel Pleil has hired a lawyer to push for criminal charges in Germany
and the US against Mr Starr for what he argues was the distribution of
pornography on the Internet and on television.
The reporter on the Flensburger Tageblatt newspaper said: "Pornographic
material was available in every nursery in Germany".
Herr Pleil, father of a four-year-old girl, said he also felt it was
"unacceptable to watch a person dragged through the dirt with the
blessings of the state".
According to Herr Pleil's attorney, Max Mulert, Kenneth Starr would face
up to five years in prison under the German penal code if convicted of
spreading "malicious gossip" degrading Bill Clinton and "obstructing his
public and political work".
Publishing pornographic writings and making them available to those under
the age of 18 is punishable by a jail sentence of one year.
Forwarded-by: Barry Perlman <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Re: words that come back to haunt one
"Therein is the most dangerous power of the prosecutor: that he will pick
people that he thinks he should get, rather than cases that need to be
prosecuted. With the law books filled with a great assortment of crimes, a
prosecutor stands a fair chance of finding at least a technical violation of
some act on the part of almost anyone. In such a case, it is not a question
of discovering the commission of a crime and then looking for the man who has
committed it, it is a question of picking the man and then searching the law
books, or putting investigators to work, to pin some offense on him. It is in
this realm -- in which the prosecutor picks some person whom he dislikes or
desires to embarrass, or selects some group of unpopular persons and then
looks for an offense, that the greatest danger of abuse of prosecuting power
lies. It is here that law enforcement becomes personal, and the real crime
becomes that of being unpopular with the predominant or governing group, being
attached to the wrong political views, or being personally obnoxious to or in
the way of the prosecutor himself."
-- Justice Antonin Scalia, in dissent, in Morrison v Olson, where the Court
upheld the Independent Counsel Law
Forwarded-by: Michael Travers <email@example.com>
dept. of symbolic gestures
Since Gingrich et al have already declared their intention to ignore public
opinion as "grotesque", this doesn't seem to serve much of a purpose beyond
venting. But if it makes you feel better...
[headers fed up with politics]
Now that the Starr report is out, and the worst is known, I've been hoping
that congress would take swift action and then move on with the business of
the country. But it seems our representatives are settling down for a long
process, and I'm not sure I can stand it. Worse, I'm not sure the country
can stand it.
I'm helping launch an Internet campaign to tell our representatives that
we've had enough. The President should receive censure from the Congress
and we should all move on. And the independent counsel investigation should
end. It's time for the public interest to come first, and for our
representatives to show real leadership.
Will you help? Just go to http://www.moveon.org to sign the petition. It
only takes a minute. And then if you send a message on to your friends and
colleagues, the ball will really get rolling. It's up to us.
Please feel free to forward this message to anyone you think would be
© 1998 Peter Langston