Well after the Supreme Court stepped in on the 2000 election,my faith in the judiciary was rattled. When a FISA court judge stepped down a couple of years later, I started to think perhaps there still was something like honor among judges and the rule of law in the country.
However, when administration officials so obviously manipulated facts to the media in the run-up to the invasion of Iraq along with heavy rhetoric about patriotism and national security that hope faded. When an investigation found that Dick Cheney was the most likely source of outing a covert agent, Valerie Plame, but somehow that investigation contorted its focus to Scooter Libby who was then found GUILTY, I was confused.
Scooter Libby guilty of outing a covert CIA operative, so I “thought” there was going to be some real consequences. First that Libby would go to jail and that possibly an investigation following up into Cheney’s involvement would proceed. However, instead after being convicted of outing a covert agent during a massive propaganda campaign to swing public opinion to invade and occupy another sovereign nation that cost the lives tens of thousands, perhaps hundreds of thousands of civilians, Scooter Libby gleefully paid a $250,000 fine on national television. The fine was not even paid for by him but paid by some PAC.
At that point, I realized the rule of law was on life support. That the judiciary could not be trusted any longer and that it had also become subject to the corruptions of money. To be able to thumb your nose at a conviction for such treasonous action and pay the fine on TV while smiling for the cameras was the ultimate display of power. I could no longer ignore the terrible corruption and hypocrisy of the judiciary in the United States.
Our only hope now is the people. That is pretty scary, but it appears to be the only course, the ballot box. To pull that off though, we need transparent and auditable elections, but NO candidate has even made a reasonable proposal to address this except Tulsi Gabbard. Power to the people…it scares me, but power to judges is a dead end. Power to politicians is worse, so paper ballots please.
Scooter Libby represents the moment when I realized the rule of law might be dead in this country unless the people resurrected it. So when you talked about #45 taking over the courts, I think about the installation of a president in 2000. The American people ignoring the resignation of a FISA court judge. I think about Scooter Libby’s smiling face ON TV after being convicted of treason! #45 didn’t take over the courts, they were already primed and ready for an ideologue/demagogue to leverage.