More Lessons in Civics: Everything from Fourth Amendment Searches to Terrorist Detainees to Bankruptcy Court Abuses

Feb 4, 2023 | 1h 28m |

Observing (among other, important Rule of Law events at this time in our history) the 20th anniversary of unfounded and misleading representations by a former Secretary of State about Saddam Hussein’s purported possession of “weapons of mass destruction” –leading to the invasion of Iraq and, three years later, my own volunteer assignment as the Justice Attaché and a Rule of Law Coordinator there, working with and training a new generation of judges, police, and prison officials in the liberated but still monumentally challenged Republic. Back at home in contemporary America, in the wake of another FBI search of the vacation residence of the current President, an explanation of the differences between a cooperation-inspired consent search and a judicially-ordered search, premised on a finding of probable cause that evidence of a crime exists at a targeted location.

Among other current events inspiring examination of our justice system and the participants in it, reporting and analysis of a stunningly baseless decision by the United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit, finding (contrary to a quarter century of law) that a domestic violence abuser may lawfully possess and use firearms under the Second Amendment; an international release from among more than 30 detainees still at the U.S. Naval Base in Guantanamo Bay of a formerly violent terrorist, who ultimately cooperated with government prosecutions of others but whose inhumane and illegal treatment at the hands of CIA and related jailers warrants continuing condemnation; and the forward progress of a federal wrongful death action by the father of one of the two men killed by Kyle Rittenhouse in the community protests of August 2020 in Kenosha, Wisconsin.

Concluding with a (highly appropriate) ruling of the United States Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit, finding that well-funded Johnson & Johnson cannot use the jurisdiction of the United States Bankruptcy Courts to protect and shield it from civil claims of people alleging physical harm from their use of talc products from the medicinal producer-distributor; the shocking reporting of the indictment and arrest of a former counterintelligence supervisor-official of the FBI for working with and being paid by a Russian oligarch that the federal domestic agency was investigating for serious crimes against the United States; and the move by the Manhattan District Attorney to pursue the criminal investigation of pre-presidential candidate Donald Trump for violations of New York state law in his payment of “hush monies” to women with whom he secretly had affairs.