Van Helsing – Remembering Vincent Bugliosi
From The Mike Malloy Show June 8, 2015.
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Vince Bugliosi died last Saturday. Rarely is John Donnes’ Any man’s death diminishes me applicable … but in Vince’s case it is as true as gravity. I have been to enough funerals and memorial services to understand the futility in attempting to sum up anyone’s life so I’m not going to try.
Vince didn’t own or use a computer so we communicated the “old-fashioned way” with letters and phone calls. He was a remarkable man. I have never met anyone who thought, spoke, and wrote, with such clarity and passion for justice. Or with such deep honest outrage over injustice.
From None Dare Call It Treason from the February 5, 2001 edition of The Nation.
In the December 12 ruling by the US Supreme Court handing the election to George Bush, the Court committed the unpardonable sin of being a knowing surrogate for the Republican Party instead of being an impartial arbiter of the law.
Sometimes the body politic is lulled into thinking along unreasoned lines. The “conventional wisdom” emerging immediately after the Court’s ruling seemed to be that the Court, by its political ruling, had only lost a lot of credibility and altitude in the minds of many people. But these critics of the ruling, even those who flat-out say the Court “stole” the election, apparently have not stopped to realize the inappropriateness of their tepid position vis-à-vis what the Court did. You mean you can steal a presidential election and your only retribution is that some people don’t have as much respect for you, as much confidence in you? That’s all? If, indeed, the Court, as the critics say, made a politically motivated ruling (which it unquestionably did), this is tantamount to saying, and can only mean, that the Court did not base its ruling on the law. And if this is so (which again, it unquestionably is), this means that these five Justices deliberately and knowingly decided to nullify the votes of the 50 million Americans who voted for Al Gore and to steal the election for Bush. Of course, nothing could possibly be more serious in its enormous ramifications. The stark reality, and I say this with every fiber of my being, is that the institution Americans trust the most to protect its freedoms and principles committed one of the biggest and most serious crimes this nation has ever seen – pure and simple, the theft of the presidency. And by definition, the perpetrators of this crime have to be denominated criminals.
From The Prosecution of George W. Bush for Murder
Perhaps the most amazing thing to me about the belief of many that George Bush lied to the American public in starting his war with Iraq is that the liberal columnists who have accused him of doing this merely make this point, and then go on to the next paragraph in their columns. Only very infrequently does a columnist add that because of it Bush should be impeached. If the charges are true, of course Bush should have been impeached, convicted, and removed from office. That’s almost too self-evident to state. But he deserves much more than impeachment. I mean, in America, we apparently impeach presidents for having consensual sex outside of marriage and trying to cover it up. If we impeach presidents for that, then if the president takes the country to war on a lie where thousands of American soldiers die horrible, violent deaths and over 100,000 innocent Iraqi civilians, including women and children, even babies are killed, the punishment obviously has to be much, much more severe. That’s just common sense. If Bush were impeached, convicted in the Senate, and removed from office, he’d still be a free man, still be able to wake up in the morning with his cup of coffee and freshly squeezed orange juice and read the morning paper, still travel widely and lead a life of privilege, still belong to his country club and get standing ovations whenever he chose to speak to the Republican faithful. This, for being responsible for over 100,000 horrible deaths?
For anyone interested in true justice, impeachment alone would be a joke for what Bush did.
Let’s look at the way some of the leading liberal lights (and, of course, the rest of the entire nation with the exception of those few recommending impeachment) have treated the issue of punishment for Bush’s cardinal sins. New York Times columnist Paul Krugman wrote about “the false selling of the Iraq War. We were railroaded into an unnecessary war.” Fine, I agree. Now what? Krugman just goes on to the next paragraph. But if Bush falsely railroaded the nation into a war where over 100,000 people died, including 4,000 American soldiers, how can you go on to the next paragraph as if you had been writing that Bush spent the weekend at Camp David with his wife? For doing what Krugman believes Bush did, doesn’t Bush have to be punished commensurately in some way? Are there no consequences for committing a crime of colossal proportions?
Al Franken on the David Letterman show said, “Bush lied to us to take us to war” and quickly went on to another subject, as if he was saying “Bush lied to us in his budget.”
Senator Edward Kennedy, condemning Bush, said that “Bush’s distortions misled Congress in its war vote” and “No President of the United States should employ distortion of truth to take the nation to war.” But, Senator Kennedy, if a president does this, as you believe Bush did, then what? Remember, Clinton was impeached for allegedly trying to cover up a consensual sexual affair. What do you recommend for Bush for being responsible for more than 100,000 deaths? Nothing? He shouldn’t be held accountable for his actions? If one were to listen to you talk, that is the only conclusion one could come to. But why, Senator Kennedy, do you, like everyone else, want to give Bush this complete free ride?
The New York Times, in a June 17, 2004, editorial, said that in selling this nation on the war in Iraq, “the Bush administration convinced a substantial majority of Americans before the war that Saddam Hussein was somehow linked to 9/11 … inexcusably selling the false Iraq-Al Qaeda claim to Americans.” But gentlemen, if this is so, then what? The New York Times didn’t say, just going on, like everyone else, to the next paragraph, talking about something else.
In a November 15, 2005, editorial, the New York Times said that “the president and his top advisers … did not allow the American people, or even Congress, to have the information necessary to make reasoned judgments of their own. It’s obvious that the Bush administration misled Americans about Mr. Hussein’s weapons and his terrorist connections.” But if it’s “obvious that the Bush administration misled Americans” in taking them to a war that tens of thousands of people have paid for with their lives, now what? No punishment? If not, under what theory? Again, you’re just going to go on to the next paragraph?
In this book, I’m not going to go on to the next unrelated paragraph.
From the end of Part Two of The Prosecution of George W. Bush for Murder
I hope that at some time in the near future a courageous U.S. attorney general, U.S. attorney, state attorney general, or district attorney in America who is committed to the rule of law and who has dedicated his career to enforcing the law fairly against all who, big or small, violate it, will hear the cries for justice from the graves of the thousands upon thousands of men, women, and children who had their lives violently cut short because of the lies of a man who smiled through it all. And that, with a sense of uncompromising righteousness, he will take the ample case I have laid out in this book before an American jury to let them decide whether George W Bush is guilty or not guilty of murder, and if so, what his punishment should be.
Even if this doesn’t happen and what I have said in this book receives all the attention of a new fly in the forest, I do know that someone had to say what is written on the pages of this book.
Vince wrote, “For those who want America to one day be the great nation it once was, it can hardly do this if it doesn’t take the first step of bringing those responsible for the war in Iraq to justice.”
My family and I live in Canada now because it was made very clear to us no one in the justice system in America had the political will to take that first step.
As Mark Twain observed, “Why is physical courage so common, but moral courage so very rare?”
Van Helsing – Remembering Vincent Bugliosi