Saturday, February 8, 2020

Why Hasn't Barr Arrested Anyone Yet?

It's a slow news day, so here's a series of tweets from Linda Rarey that offer Andy McCarthy's view on why there have so far been no arrests or announced indictments in Russia Hoax related matters. Two preliminary notes:

1. Rather than embedding the tweets as I've been doing, I've inserted them as text--it's more work, but I try to please as many as I can. :-)

2. I'm not much of a fan of McCarthy's political judgments, but on purely prosecutorial matters I think he's sound and balanced.


1. An important point @AndrewCMcCarthy made tonight was that regarding the lack of arrests in the attempted coup is that it's better to do all the arrests at the same time.
9:23 PM · Feb 7, 20202. Once an arrest is made, then the defense gets discovery--i.e. they get to see all the case evidence. If you start arresting the low hanging fruit, then the bigger fish may get tipped off to the detriment of the ongoing investigation.
3. In my experience, when we had complex cases with a lot of defendants, we would do sealed indictments and then conduct a big, simultaneous takedown of all the players.
Obviously, neither I nor McCarthy know that this is the explanation, but it is a very reasonable explanation. Part of that calculation is a related consideration that I've touched on in the past--once an arrest is made the pressure to be prepared for trial and to go to trial is on. Every defendant is entitled to a speedy trial--or at least an expeditious commencement barring all the pre-trial maneuvering. The point remains the same. Premature arrest of subjects in related cases, and especially in the case of a conspiracy, can be very detrimental to the case as a whole. This is especially the case since investigations typically work from the bottom up, working up the ladder as the expression goes, so that premature arrests can leave you with convictions of none but "low hanging fruit." That's not what we want in this most momentous of political scandals. Barr has openly stated that he expects major developments by late spring or early summer, and I think we should be patient and take him at his word. There is no reason to doubt him at this point.

On the other hand, it's conceivable, as I've suggested in a hopeful vein, that there could be action regarding Deep State activity leading to the Impeachment Theater. One complicating factor in that regard is that we have learned that some of the same major players figured into both the Russia Hoax as well as the Impeachment Theater/Ukraine Hoax.

On a more discouraging note, three tweets from Paul Sperry that illustrate how hard it is to do something about the entrenched civil service bureaucracy. And the citizenry were told by progressives of the day that civil service would lead to "good government" as opposed to political cronyism:

BREAKING: Gabriel Sanz-Rexach is Obama official who was the FISA gatekeeper at DOJ in 2016 when the illegal warrant to spy on Trump campaign was authorized. Sanz-Rexach also happens to be the same official who just certified to the FISA court that DOJ & FBI would reform their ways.
BREAKING: Dana Boente was the hi-ranking DOJ official held over from the Obama admin who signed off on the now-invalid 3rd FISA warrant to spy on Trump aide Carter Page. Boente is now the FBI's GC who just certified to the FISA court the FBI would reform its FISA abusing.
BREAKING: FBI Director Wray is initiating FISA-reform training but only at FBI field offices -- even though the illegal FISA abuses took place primarily at FBI headquarters.

Wouldn't it be refreshing if the FISC refused to accept certifications from Boente and Sanz-Rexach? It wouldn't be a judgment of guilt--just a judicial expression of no-confidence in their competence that would be well deserved. As it is, what reason does any informed citizen have for trusting the FBI, DoJ, or the Federal judiciary. I understand that all these officials are protected by law from summary dismissal, but the judiciary is not obliged to play make believe in such cases.


  1. McCarthy's blind spot is his belief that his DoJ collegues are able to put aside their politics. He is slowly being awakened to the actual reality, but still has a ways to go.

    1. Yes. But it goes a bit beyond that to a 3 Monkeys type attitude toward former colleagues like Fitzgerald, Comey, Mueller, etc.

    2. Agree with you both. Reading McCarthy's book revealed for me Mark's observation/critique of McCarthy. McCarthy let pass the Comey/Deep State perspective that the elected president has to pass muster with them (in so many words). McCarthy just believes that--as Mark put it--his "SDNY buddies" are above reproach. Astonishing and frightening.

    3. @Yancey

      "McCarthy's blind spot is his belief that his DoJ colleagues are able to put aside their politics."

      My two cents:

      I think McCarthy is still somewhat in thrall to the Trump-hating Legal Establishment. Part of him still wants to be 'in the Club'. Unfortunately the Club consists largely of Elite, Ivy League, Big Firm types who are in most cases Trump haters. So McCarthy is on solid ground where he's discussing hard law and legal process...his expertise. But when he drifts into the politics of the various hoaxes he holds back, one or two toes still dipped into the Swamp, concerned about whether he will be kicked out of the Club for supporting Trump.

      At least that's how I see it.


  2. What could possibly stop Barr from removing Sanz-Rexach and Boente, from such positions (e.g. GC) where they could hugely influence policy toward FISA warrants?

    Why can't Barr demand that these two recuse themselves, esp. seeing that Boente may be outright criminally culpable for pushing the now-outright Invalid 3rd FISA warrant?

    How is all this not regarded, as an outright Banana Republic caricature?

  3. A couple of thoughts -

    We all have blind spots when it comes to family and close friends simply because we've known them for so long. Sometimes you can see through those blind spots, but usually not, even when the evidence hits you like a 2x4 between the eyes. As Mark noted, Andy is a first rate former prosecutor - his convictions prove it.

    One of the hardest things to do in a criminal investigation is to give your suspect(s) plenty of rope to hang themselves. Once you - the investigator - have your required proof of their misdeeds it is SO hard not to just arrest them ASAP. 9 times out of 10 you'll wind up catching even more fish if you can have the patience to let it ride just a little longer. Is that Barr's plan? I don't know. But it is what I'd be doing in his shoes, especially if some of the birds are starting to sing.

    1. As I argued recently, while I can't claim inside knowledge, Barr has a well earned rep as a top notch and extremely aggressive litigator. He's at the top of his profession with nothing to prove and doesn't need this job. I can't believe he took it just to fail.

  4. When Trump first took office, one of the many questions that arose was "why doesn't Trump just fire all the Obama hold-overs he thinks are plotting against him?" The companion question is the usual "Why aren't the bad guys being indicted?"

    A fellow internet poster I respect immensely, and who had experience doing business with the IC agencies, gave an insightful and somewhat informed response to this line of reasoning: he pointed out that if there were a conspiracy inside the government to take down Trump's campaign and then his administration, the last thing he should do is fire or arrest them all as fast as could be done. He explained the better plan is to leave them in place where one can analyze their contacts, their meta-data, and build the map of their conspiracy network. Otherwise, you will miss many of the bad guys, and they will remain, plotting against the President.

    You only take them down once you've extracted all useful info from their communications with co-conspirators, and as MW has already noted, you try to do that all at once, so as to not tip off the other bad guys prematurely. That means sealed indictments, and it takes far more time than any of us would like.

    When I wax hopeful, I like to fancy that the entire Ukraine fabricated Scam-peachment™ was being watched in real time by investigators, who kept their mouths shut so they could catch people in flagrante delicto plotting another coup against a sitting POTUS. I like to think the declassification and release of Trump's phone call with Zelensky was a clue they knew what was going on, as it is clear the fake WB account of the call is NOT accurate -- suggesting they tried to fake what Trump said based on the assumption he would never release the text of the call.

    Time will tell, but I will not be surprised if there are mass indictments for all they hanky-panky that was going on this Spring and Summer and Fall coordinating the fabricated Scam-Peachment™.

    And, hopefully, Durham also has most of the goods on the earlier politically motivated illegality that was rampant in 2016 up through Mueller's scam Investigation, which was just another extension of the ongoing rolling soft coup.

    1. One of the first news items after the Ukraine hoax broke--largely lost in the usual media manufactured hubhub--was that FBI agents had been dispatched to the WH. I assumed at the time that that would be part of a major leak investigation. I have no reason to doubt that, although fast results are gratifying.

    2. The scope of this is mind boggling.

    3. Yesterday at CTH in the post on Giuliani, was a vivid theory about Barr etc.:

      "Jim in TN says: February 9, 2020 at 9:31 am:
      Willy Nilly, the day Biden made that statement was January 23, 2018.

      By that time, the DOJ was in full Mutiny mode. Rod Rosenstein and crew was running amok, and Sessions was a senile idiot being kept in his cabin.

      Sessions will eventually be fired, November 7, 2018, but by then the Dems will have taken the House, thanks to Rosenstein blackmailing the President with impeachment, should he dare “obstruct” Mueller by releasing the horrible truth, about the trumped up charges and the lying investigators. That included hiding Rosenstein’s culpability.

      Barr coopted Rosenstein, forcing Rosenstein to stay on until Mueller reported, and forcing Rosenstein to bless the No Collusion determination by Mueller, and the No Obstruction determination by Barr and the OLC. But the price was *hiding* Rosenstein’s crimes. Even the IG fails to recommend prosecuting the criminals like Rosenstein, who foisted this frame up on the country by lying to the courts.

      And of course the IG report was delayed, so the House could impeach anyways. And the info Rosenstein blackmailed Trump to keep hidden, is still being hidden by Barr.

      The Mutiny in the DOJ has not ended. Barr has coopted it for his own purposes, the way he coopted mutineer Rosenstein...."

    4. Right. Anyone who thinks RR had any leverage over Barr is delusional. As if Barr needed RR to say there was no collusion? "Oh please, just say there was no collusion and I'll hide your crimes!

      Why do you read that stuff?

      Anyway, I saw the post last night before bed and I'll write a bit about another delusional aspect of it a little later.

    5. Re-listen to any interview with Barr and ask yourself--does that delusional narrative sound remotely like him? He came out of a comfortable retirement to allow a weasel like RR push him around?

  5. I certainly didn't mean to insist, that he would come out of a comfortable retirement, just to allow a weasel like RR to push him around.
    When I post quotes from CTH, it's just to rattle cages, seeing as your experience (hence your expertise) in such circles dwarfs mine.

    I rattle cages here, because this whole situation blows my mind, and I'm groping for some sort of handle on all this.
    Who'd have thunk, say, that the Dems/ MSM would've staked so much, on such a brutally implausible theory as what they pushed on Russia & DJT, or on an impeachment of him, based on such a slender reed as this Ukraine B.S. (esp. given Biden's widely-known boasting on TV, about how he gave them *six hours* to toss Shokin)?

    This all is, as the saying goes, The Damnedest Thing.
    Please keep up the good work.

    1. Speaking of rattling cages, check out the latest post.