March 16, 2008

Excerpt of the Day: WSJ on Dickie Scruggs

Filed under: Quotes, Etc. of the Day,Taxes & Government — Tom @ 11:01 am

Following in the heels of Eliot Spitzer, a noted tort bar corporate torturer bites the dust:

Richard “Dickie” Scruggs, a founding father of the modern mega-tort class-action industry, pleaded guilty yesterday to trying to bribe a judge.

….. Now it is Mr. Scruggs who has thrown up his hands and entered a plea. He may face five years in prison. Specifically he has pleaded guilty to attempting to bribe Lafayette County, Mississippi, County Circuit Court Judge Henry L. Lackey. Mr. Scruggs was seeking a court ruling in his favor in a mass settlement in cases culled from Hurricane Katrina. At issue were $26.5 million in disputed legal fees. Judge Lackey called in the FBI.

The question buzzing through legal circles yesterday was why a guy that rich and that good at beating money out of corporations would put the whole game at risk this way. We’ll sum it up in one famous, potent word: hubris. After the personal ruin seen in the Spitzer and Scruggs cases this week, it is hard to blink at the irony here. They made their mark yelling that the rich and famous were subject to the laws of mere mortals. Once larger than life, both men have shown why that’s still true.

Thank God for judges like Mr. Lackey, who was not a lackey when it counted.

Obama Gives a Nod to Wright

Filed under: Taxes & Government — Tom @ 10:39 am

From an August 9, 2007 article in NewsMax by Jim Davis (HT The Autonomist via Michelle Malkin), in a piece about the church frequently attended by the presidential candidate I refer to as BOOHOO (Barack O-bomba Overseas Hussein “Obambi” Obama; bold is mine):

Wright laced into America’s establishment, blaming the “white arrogance” of America’s Caucasian majority for the woes of the world, especially the oppression suffered by blacks. To underscore the point he refers to the country as the “United States of White America.” Many in the congregation, including Obama, nodded in apparent agreement as these statements were made.

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Update, March 17 — The Obama campaign says that he couldn’t have been there on July 22, the date Newsmax’s Davis claims he saw what he saw. Fine — I want to hear from NewsMax, of course, but it could easily have been July 29. I’m supposed to believe that NewsMax writer Davis just made it up? Please.

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Did I say “frequently attended?” In his interview Friday with Major Garrett of Fox News, Obama attempted to downplay his involvement with the Rev. Jeremiah Wright’s Trinity United Church of Christ:

You know, I won’t say that I was a perfect attendee. I was regular in spurts, because there was times when, for example, our child had just been born, our first child. And so we didn’t go as regularly then.

Hmm. This April 30, 2007 New York Times article says that:

In the 16 years since Mr. Obama returned to Chicago from Harvard, Mr. Wright has presided over his wedding ceremony, baptized his two daughters and dedicated his house, while Mr. Obama has often spoken at Trinity’s panels and debates. Though the Obamas drop in on other congregations, they treat Trinity as their spiritual home, attending services frequently. The church’s Afrocentric focus makes Mr. Obama a figure of particular authenticity there, because he has the African connections so many members have searched for.

Two thoughts:

  • About the past, the NYT piece doesn’t exactly contradict what he told Garrett, but it’s too close for comfort.
  • It’s the part about the present that throws open the curtain. In April 2007, months after supposedly putting some distance between himself and the Rev. Wright, Obama was still frequently attending services, and therefore frequently heard Wright’s rants, and therefore, more likely than not, continued hearing statements by Rev. Wright similar to the ones “that are the cause of this controversy” (quoting from Obama’s statement at HuffPo also found at Sweetness & Light.

As Mark, the Whole D**n Show Garbett said last night in a wireless phone appearance on TIB Radio, either Obama agrees with the Rev. Wright’s vision of an America thoroughly dominated by whites who are racist through and through, or he has been play-acting for all these years to prove to the African-American community that he’s down with the struggle. Neither alternative is acceptable.

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UPDATE: (HTs for both items to commenter Candy) This American Thinker post by Ed Lasky points to more heated rhetoric in Obama’s past.

This American Thinker editorial thoroughly deconstructs Obama’s HuffPo statement, leaving it in a million pieces on the floor.

Positivity: Thrift store worker returns $30,000

Filed under: Positivity — Tom @ 6:48 am

From Pomona, Caliifornia:

Southern California woman found pile of cash in donated clothing

A thrift store worker in Southern California says she didn’t think twice about returning $30,000 she found in donated clothing.

Barbarita Nunez was sorting clothes on Tuesday at the Veterans Thrift Store when she found a small box. Inside was an envelope of cash. Nunez said at first she thought the money was fake. But just in case, she gave it to her supervisor.

The money turned out to belong to a woman who had recently died. It was returned to her family, who gave Nunez a cash reward.