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How important is what we did in high school? Kavanaugh accusation

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4 hours ago, Vort said:

Don't be naive. If the senators had asked Ford any real questions, they would have been crucified by the press for treating a poor victim of sexual assault so badly. Everyone knows this. That is why the senators got a FEMALE prosecutor to question her -- and even the prosecutor used kid gloves in dealing with her.

To say that the senators should have grilled Ford more closely is either to betray astounding naivete or willful blindness. The senators were hoping the FBI could have asked Ford the questions they that (the senators) wanted to ask, but dared not do so in the context of political theater.

Dear Vort- I was really talking about the Democratic senators not asking her any relevant questions about her allegations. They made statements instead of questions of relevance. I will have to fix that confusion of which party did what.

 You had a good post though- I agree with everything you said.... except the part of me being naive.

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1 minute ago, Lindy said:

Dear Vort- I was really talking about the Democratic senators not asking her any relevant questions about her allegations. They made statements instead of questions of relevance. I will have to fix that confusion of which party did what.

Then I must apologize for misunderstanding you and change my answer. The Demonrat senators did not ask relevant questions because they did not want those answers. They did not and do not care about truth, but about achieving their political and social goals.

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1 hour ago, Just_A_Guy said:

All-rrrrrriiiiiiiiiiiighty, then . . .

That’s what statutes of limitations are for, though. ;) 

Fifth Amendment question:

Suppose I am guilty of committing some felony, but the statute of limitations has passed. Suppose that I am then subpoenaed for some trial, at which point I'm sworn in and asked point-blank whether I committed that very crime. Can I plead the Fifth?

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1 minute ago, Vort said:

Fifth Amendment question:

Suppose I am guilty of committing some felony, but the statute of limitations has passed. Suppose that I am then subpoenaed for some trial, at which point I'm sworn in and asked point-blank whether I committed that very crime. Can I plead the Fifth?

IIRC pleading the 5th doesn’t mean the answer WILL incriminate me; only that it MAY incriminate me.  I would go ahead and plead it; especially since as a layman I probably won’t be intimately familiar with the statutes of limitations.

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3 minutes ago, Vort said:

Fifth Amendment question:

Suppose I am guilty of committing some felony, but the statute of limitations has passed. Suppose that I am then subpoenaed for some trial, at which point I'm sworn in and asked point-blank whether I committed that very crime. Can I plead the Fifth?

I would say that you should probably plead the fifth.

Quote

No person shall be held to answer for a capital, or otherwise infamous crime, unless on a presentment or indictment of a Grand Jury, except in cases arising in the land or naval forces, or in the Militia, when in actual service in time of War or public danger; nor shall any person be subject for the same offence to be twice put in jeopardy of life or limb; nor shall be compelled in any criminal case to be a witness against himself, nor be deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor shall private property be taken for public use, without just compensation.

Regardless of whether the statute of limitations has passed or not or whether you are guilty or not, you shall not be compelled to be a witness against yourself.  You can volunteer that information, but we cannot FORCE you to witness against yourself.

My take at least.

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3 minutes ago, Just_A_Guy said:

IIRC pleading the 5th doesn’t mean the answer WILL incriminate me; only that it MAY incriminate me.  I would go ahead and plead it; especially since as a layman I probably won’t be intimately familiar with the statutes of limitations.

The point is, if I'm no longer in danger of prosecution, do I lose my Fifth Amendment protection against self-incrimination? The Fifth Amendment was not written nor (I'm sure) intended to avoid embarrassment or social consequences, only to avoid punitive treatment of ancient crimes. I seem to recall instances where a judge instructed someone to offer incriminating testimony but told him that he would not be held to account for his actions in any legal proceeding. That makes me suppose that a judge can compel self-incriminating testimony as long as he grants full immunity. Is this true? If so, does it mean that once the statute of limitations is up, you have no Fifth Amendment protection against self-incrimination?

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4 minutes ago, Vort said:

The point is, if I'm no longer in danger of prosecution, do I lose my Fifth Amendment protection against self-incrimination? The Fifth Amendment was not written nor (I'm sure) intended to avoid embarrassment or social consequences, only to avoid punitive treatment of ancient crimes. I seem to recall instances where a judge instructed someone to offer incriminating testimony but told him that he would not be held to account for his actions in any legal proceeding. That makes me suppose that a judge can compel self-incriminating testimony as long as he grants full immunity. Is this true? If so, does it mean that once the statute of limitations is up, you have no Fifth Amendment protection against self-incrimination?

Not necessarily correct.  When one does not know all the facets of a crime, we can only suppose that a facet may be under the statute of limitations.  However, in light of ever changing conditions and new evidence, when in a trial, even if you are not the subject, though a statute of limitations may have run out on one particular charge, another may arise from the same conceit which would put you in jeopardy. 

Therefore, the fifth would still hold.

The judge would have to waive the ability to hold you guilty for ANY crime you have EVER committed, not just that particular crime.  Not only is that normally not legally sound, but no judge in their right mind is going to give you a blanket like that.

Once again, MY TAKE on it.

Edited by JohnsonJones

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8 minutes ago, Vort said:

The point is, if I'm no longer in danger of prosecution, do I lose my Fifth Amendment protection against self-incrimination? The Fifth Amendment was not written nor (I'm sure) intended to avoid embarrassment or social consequences, only to avoid punitive treatment of ancient crimes. I seem to recall instances where a judge instructed someone to offer incriminating testimony but told him that he would not be held to account for his actions in any legal proceeding. That makes me suppose that a judge can compel self-incriminating testimony as long as he grants full immunity. Is this true? If so, does it mean that once the statute of limitations is up, you have no Fifth Amendment protection against self-incrimination?

I’d never really thought about or looked into it.  A cursory Google search suggests that if the risk of prosecution is clearly over, the 5th doesn’t apply.  (If that’s right, then mechanically what would probably happen is that you would invoke the 5th and then the questioner would object and argue to the judge as to why the 5th shouldn’t apply.  The judge would then answer the question and you would either answer or find yourself in contempt.)

SOL or not, and 5th amendment or not, I’m probably not going to answer a question like that unless or until a judge specifically orders me to.

Edited by Just_A_Guy

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6 minutes ago, Just_A_Guy said:

I’d never really thought about or looked into it.  A cursory Google search suggests that if the risk of prosecution is clearly over, the 5th doesn’t apply.  (If that’s right, then mechanically what would probably happen is that you would invoke the 5th and then the questioner would object and argue to the judge as to why the 5th shouldn’t apply.  The judge would then answer the question and you would either answer or find yourself in contempt.)

SOL or not, and 5th amendment or not, I’m probably not going to answer a question like that unless or until a judge specifically orders me to.

So then, if I refuse to offer self-incriminating testimony about a crime for which I cannot be charged, I can be found in contempt of court. And if I lie under oath to protect my name or reputation or the secrecy of my complicity in the crime, I can be convicted of perjury. Interesting.

The Fifth Amendment is commonly said to protect us against being compelled to offer self-incriminating testimony, but this is inaccurate. It would be more accurate to say that the Fifth Amendment protects us against being compelled to offer self-incriminating testimony of an actionable nature. Do you agree?

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1 minute ago, Just_A_Guy said:

I’d never really thought about or looked into it.  A cursory Google search suggests that if the risk of prosecution is clearly over, the 5th doesn’t apply.  (If that’s right, then mechanically what would probably happen is that you would invoke the 5th and then the questioner would object and argue to the judge as to why the 5th shouldn’t apply.  The judge would then answer the question and you would either answer or find yourself in contempt.)

The judge could hold the individual in contempt but as they cannot waive the protections of the 5th, the judge would be hard pressed on it.

The Onus then would be on the court to prove that there would be no harm in regards to the individual pleading the 5th amendment. 

A prime example, a young man was involved in a robbery 15 years ago involving taking $30 from the registry.  The statute of limitations passed on that.  The judge asks the individual if they committed that robbery. 

The individual should plead the fifth.

They, instead, say that yes they were involved with that robbery 15 years ago.  As a result, their accomplice is convicted of second degree murder.  The individual is then put on trial for being an accomplice to murder.

If the judge told that individual that they had to continue as the statute of limitations had run out, I'd have already put in a motion that the individual would plead the fifth (they cannot just sit there silently and refuse to answer, as that is NOT pleading the fifth.  It must be made clear.  AS per a court case on this very item arose several years ago...just sitting there silently is not pleading the fifth, and refusing to answer is not pleading the fifth.  Thus it is VERY unlikely that this scenario would even arise in a court.  It must be made clear in order to do so).  In this instance, the judge may try to compel them to answer, but probably would not as most judges are very sensitive to these situations. 

A judge could still hold them in contempt (though more likely would be an individual that did NOT understand how to plead the fifth and instead simply refused to answer the questions rather than having made it clear prior to this that they were pleading the fifth), but then the onus would be to prove that there is no risk of them incriminating themselves on any current crimes.

Generally, this is a VERY rare occasion where one can be a witness to something which has had the statute of limitations run, but be on a current criminal court, and not have any related or other crimes which they could be charged with in addition to the crime they are being questioned about.

However, there are many tools (plea bargaining, pointing out other facets) that one can use to get one guilty of a crime to be a witness against someone else, especially if the other is guilty of a greater crime than they are.  A judge could waive any and ALL penalty to that crime the individual committed (and facilities thereof) if need be in order to try to get a conviction against someone guilty of a heftier crime.

I'd say, depends on the situation...I'd always say plead the fifth and utilize the amendments.

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10 minutes ago, Vort said:

So then, if I refuse to offer self-incriminating testimony about a crime for which I cannot be charged, I can be found in contempt of court. And if I lie under oath to protect my name or reputation or the secrecy of my complicity in the crime, I can be convicted of perjury. Interesting.

The Fifth Amendment is commonly said to protect us against being compelled to offer self-incriminating testimony, but this is inaccurate. It would be more accurate to say that the Fifth Amendment protects us against being compelled to offer self-incriminating testimony of an actionable nature. Do you agree?

I would stand by the traditional notion that the Fifth Amendment protects us against being compelled to offer self-incriminating testimony; but with the caveat that “self-incriminating” here has a very specific meaning.  It specifically means stuff that subjects us to criminal convictions—not merely stuff that makes us look bad or damages our social, family, financial, or privacy interests.  

Or—yeah.  Po-tay-toe, Po-tah-toe.

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6 minutes ago, Vort said:

So then, if I refuse to offer self-incriminating testimony about a crime for which I cannot be charged, I can be found in contempt of court. And if I lie under oath to protect my name or reputation or the secrecy of my complicity in the crime, I can be convicted of perjury. Interesting.

The Fifth Amendment is commonly said to protect us against being compelled to offer self-incriminating testimony, but this is inaccurate. It would be more accurate to say that the Fifth Amendment protects us against being compelled to offer self-incriminating testimony of an actionable nature. Do you agree?

You can be found in contempt of court for various things.  I would highly suggest NOT committing perjury.

Even if found in contempt of court, depending on the reason, it could be contested.  For a fifth amendment plea, as I would probably assume it would be entered as the intent to plead this PRIOR to even being in the court, it would be an indirect contempt charge.  This means that you would be able to have it as a court proceeding and the judge would have to show that you were showing contempt rather than a valid constitutional reasoning behind it.

If it truly is a charge that you can no longer be held guilty of and there are NO other charges that can be gained from it, in THEORY it may be chargeable, but normally this is only in THEORY and not reality (In my estimation).  The reason is that you are no longer being held accountable as a criminal (and it applies to criminal cases, though we also apply it to civil cases in the US to a degree) or criminal charges.  If there will be no possibility of criminal or civil charges arising from being such a witness against oneself, it could be argued that you can be forced to be a witness in such a degree.

However, the problem arises with the connected issues such as relation to other events, crimes, and proceedings as well as civil liabilities.  In this, it would be on the court to prove that such things are either waived (and as I said, most judges are not going to give such a blanket waiver), OR that there will be no such injury to the citizen.

In otherwords...yes, I suppose I agree...but you're not likely to see such things occur I imagine.  Normally certain conditions and deals would be made prior to someone being such a witness.

Just to be clear, many assume pleading the fifth means that you go to court and refuse to answer in the middle of proceedings, however as per rulings in recent years, this does not count as a protection.  It must be CLEAR that you will be pleading the fifth, at least in a criminal case.  If you simply refuse to answer, that would be direct contempt and a very different situation.

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5 minutes ago, Just_A_Guy said:

I would stand by the traditional notion that the Fifth Amendment protects us against being compelled to offer self-incriminating testimony; but with the caveat that “self-incriminating” here has a very specific meaning.  It specifically means stuff that subjects us to criminal convictions—not merely stuff that makes us look bad or damages our social, family, financial, or privacy interests.  

Or—yeah.  Po-tay-toe, Po-tah-toe.

Would this apply to a situation where I'm afraid of a civil suit? Can I be forced to testify against myself if I'm only civilly liable, not criminally?

EDIT: Is there a statute of limitations for civil matters?

Edited by Vort

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1 minute ago, Vort said:

Would this apply to a situation where I'm afraid of a civil suit? Can I be forced to testify against myself if I'm only civilly liable, not criminally?

Depends. 

Normally the issue of civil liability runs out far before the issue of criminal liability.

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41 minutes ago, Vort said:

Would this apply to a situation where I'm afraid of a civil suit? Can I be forced to testify against myself if I'm only civilly liable, not criminally?

EDIT: Is there a statute of limitations for civil matters?

There can be SOLs on civil matters.  And at least in my state, the fifth amendment doesn’t really apply to civil cases.

(Well, it does; but basically what happens is that for purposes of the civil case the court can treat invocation of the 5th as an admission against their interest.  So for example, in a case where DCFS is trying to bring children into state custody and we ask a dad “Sir, did you hit your child with a belt, causing bruising?”—he can claim the 5th, but the court will presume for the purposes of this case only that his answer would be “yes”, and at the end of trial the court may use that to find by “clear and convincing evidence” that the child is an abused child.  The court can’t convict the dad of a criminal offense and put him in jail (because the standard for criminal conviction is “beyond a reasonable doubt”, which is higher than “clear and convincing”).  But it can put the child into DCFS custody.  

(Note:  in four years of child welfare law practice I have *never* seen a parent take the 5th on the witness stand.  Usually, people just lie.) 

Edited by Just_A_Guy

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8 minutes ago, Just_A_Guy said:

(Note:  in four years of child welfare law practice I have *never* seen a parent take the 5th on the witness stand.  Usually, people just lie.) 

How often does that perjury get prosecuted? And what's the conviction rate?

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30 minutes ago, Vort said:

How often does that perjury get prosecuted? And what's the conviction rate?

I don’t have any global statistical data here; only anecdotal data from my own little corner of the justice system.  But I have never seen a contempt motion for perjury.  (I thought about it, once, because I was so ticked off at a witness; but I slept on it and got over my pique the next morning.)  I *think*, years ago, maybe I saw *one* criminal prosecution for perjury in the courtroom.  It’s pretty rare, in my experience.  I think, perversely, that’s probably because actual perjury is so common—if we prosecuted/pursued contempt for every instance of perjury we’d never get anything else done.

It seems much more common to see people prosecuted for lying to cops, though—that’s the context in which it seems most “obstruction of justice” charges get filed (again, in my relatively limited experience.)

Edited by Just_A_Guy

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I just read this on Facebook. I don't know the author or the person who posted it before it was shared by my friend. But it hits the nail on the head of the original OP question:

Written by a Female Physician who was wild in college. "This is not Justice. This is Wrong... I was immersed in the party scene in college. I drank to excess. I had black out nights. I WAS GROPED AT FRAT PARTIES. If advances were unwanted I pushed the person away and set personal boundaries. I chose to be a part of the party scene. Because of this I had fun and I have regrets. I HAVE BEEN ASSAULTED AND NOT RAPED. I could replay a scenario like Christine Ford described as very similar to things that happened when excessive drinking occurred in my own experiences. 
At the age of 25 I settled down and now my idea of excitement is Netflix and yoga pants. If any of my current patients saw my behavior back then, I could understand why they wouldn’t want me to care for them. 
I feel like being a physician is every bit as important as being a Supreme Court Justice. The decisions we make over the span of our careers could change the lives of thousands of people and their descendants for years to come. The same can be said for the Supreme Court or any other political office held. The thing is, poor choices in the past does not, and should not disqualify them. I chugged bankers club whiskey in a cornfield and peed behind a dumpster 25 years ago. But Friday I used tiny instruments to remove infected bony partitions from the ethmoid sinus a few millimeters away from the brain. Should I have a right to operate on humans despite my past? You are damn right I do. You know why? Because I spent 20 years educating myself and sacrificing countless hours to get there. I gave up so much to be good at what I do, to be confident enough in myself to put myself out there to care for people who put their lives in my hands. My hands are capable in spite of my weaknesses of the past. 
Character is built partially on learning from mistakes. Brett Kavanaugh has devoted his life to public service and the past 20 years of his life is the definition of integrity. He deserves this appointment.
I AM AGAINST THE WEAPONIZATION OF VICTIMHOOD. Believing unequivocally the woman is right every single time no matter what is giving women power to take out anyone in their path. That is not equality. This radical position is not the answer to gender discrimination and victims rights. 
No one can even place Brett Kavanaugh and the Christine Ford IN THE SAME ROOM at a party that zero people recollect except for the woman making the accusations. 
If every single woman must be believed every single time, we all know there will be circumstances by which someone will use this power for selfish reasons. It sets women back so far. This is not breaking the glass ceiling. THIS IS NOT JUSTICE. THIS IS WRONG. (Please Note: The author of this testimonial is not me. The doctor who wrote this is a friend of my medical friend, so I can vouch for its authenticity. -- Marjie Lewis)

 
 
 

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13 hours ago, Lindy said:

Dear Vort- I was really talking about the Democratic senators not asking her any relevant questions about her allegations. They made statements instead of questions of relevance. I will have to fix that confusion of which party did what.

 You had a good post though- I agree with everything you said.... except the part of me being naive.

Lindy, the other shoe dropped.  It is now evident that Ford’s lifelong friend who was at her table during the hearing is the same person that her ex-boyfriend stated was the person Ford helped prepare for a polygraph test.  She passed that test and has been working for the FBI potentially with the power to impact the investigation.

Grassley has been demanding that they release all documents that they claimed as evidence during the hearings and the Ford lawyers have been refusing.  Grassley, et.al. know something and is forcing the Dems to expose their hand.  Check out this letter.

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Why are we talking about this. There's no evidence of wrong doing and hypothetical questions are bad. There is evidence that was blocked that Ford is the only person involved who has much to be ashamed of.  This was just a stunt designed to destroy a man with no evidence. If anyone believes this how can they trust any man who ever lived. The extremist say all men have done this.

If a child is born, they believe, a  woman has been raped twice. The extremist are against all relations between a man and a woman, even in marriage.

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Just a random thought about the headline topic of this string:  How many of us will not qualify for public office due to the freedom with which we expressed ourselves here? As for me, it matters not. There's so much material from my high school and college editorial writing days that any political future I thought I might have had is gone. I used to think I could say, "I've grown since then. . . " but that's obviously a non-starter, post-Kavanaugh. :::sigh::: :pcguru:

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On 10/13/2018 at 3:04 PM, prisonchaplain said:

Just a random thought about the headline topic of this string:  How many of us will not qualify for public office due to the freedom with which we expressed ourselves here? As for me, it matters not. There's so much material from my high school and college editorial writing days that any political future I thought I might have had is gone. I used to think I could say, "I've grown since then. . . " but that's obviously a non-starter, post-Kavanaugh. :::sigh::: :pcguru:

Interestingly, Ford's social media presence was PROFESSIONALLY scrubbed.  It was such a clean job that even hackers came up empty.  You can go hire them people, whoever they are.  Probably tied to the NSA or something.

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Another one bites the dust...

So this is where we are today.

Ford’s sexual assault allegations through Diane Feinstein:  refuted by all named witnesses.  Doctors notes refuted.  Fear of flying refuted.  2 front doors refuted.  Polygraph refuted.  Zero evidence.  Went radio silent after Kavanaugh confirmation.  Got almost a million dollars from crowdfunding and 7 book deals.

Avenatti’s accusers through Senator Whitehouse (D-RI):  Boat rape and Swetnick’s cases referred to DOJ for prosecution for obstruction of Senate procedure.

And this allegation through Kamala Harris:  Also sent to DOJ for prosecution.

This is what Justice looks like.

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