May 23, 2012

Somebody is stupid but it's clearly not Tom Barrett

"I understand that Barrett is apparently privy to the entire investigation — contrary to the law." — blargher Owen Robinson*
"Is Barrett too stupid to understand what 'John Doe' means?," wonders leading Wisconsin conservative Republican blargher Owen Robinson of Milwaukee mayor and Democratic candidate for governor Tom Barrett, who's called for the incumbent Scott Walker to release emails from Walker's secret system, which isn't a secret any more. "The whole [John Doe] proceeding is legally bound to be secret," claims the top blargher.

That's simply not true.

The examination of any witnesses identified by the district attorney to the presiding judge may be secret,** say the statutory provisions governing John Doe proceedings; secrecy is at the discretion of the presiding judge and in any event the judge's authority to impose secrecy is limited to the witnesses' testimony and the record of the proceeding.

That is, the judge may impose secrecy with respect to testimony about the emails during the examination of witnesses at the proceeding, but he has no authority to impose secrecy orders upon Scott Walker's interoffice emails themselves. Therefore it's perfectly appropriate — and not at all "too stupid" — for Tom Barrett to demand that Scott Walker produce his formerly secret — the former secrecy of which has nothing to do with the discretionary secrecy given the judge — correspondence.

Stupider still is O. Robinson's claim that Barrett is "privy to the entire investigation ... contrary to the law." That's the sort of assertion, which strongly implies unlawful actions on the part of either Barrett or those investigators subject to the actual secrecy orders of the judge, that its speaker needs to provide either testimony or evidence in furtherance of.

But obviously top Wisconsin blargher Owen Robinson is in possession of neither such evidence nor such testimony. It's just a stupid thing to say.

And it's precisely those manifestly irresponsible and baseless accusations that Janine Geske et al took to the papers to thoroughly debunk.

Meanwhile blargher Robinson wonders if others are stupid? How droll.

The right-wing's tedious assertions that there are "leaks" coming from the John Doe investigation into several of Walker's political cronies — and perhaps Walker himself — are popular among the local conservative contingent, yet not one of them has ever provided even one example. But they believe whatever they want to believe, contrary to the reality.

However, that's nothing new, and is most certainly no secret.

* See also our friend John Foust's Owen Robinson parody site, Boots and Kittens, still the funniest blog in Wisconsin: "Follow the logic."

** Compare "shall select."

3 comments:

Jb said...

Correct me if I'm wrong, but unless he's somehow a target or otherwise involved with the John Doe investigation, Robinson himself should not have any knowledge of what anyone involved in the proceedings should or should not know about the investigation.

If someone's telling Robinson that so-and-so is keeping such-and-such abreast of the inquiry, then it would appear that Robinson is just as guilty of dabbling in insider info as the person he accuses of the same evil deed.

This leads me to think that Robinson is passing off gossip as inerrant fact or someone from Team Walker is leaking like a proverbial sieve. Either way, Robinson looks like a tool.

illusory tenant said...

The simplest -- and empirically consistent -- explanation is he's full of shit.

John Foust said...

Full of it? Why, he's been rolling in it, just for fun. With other guys. And showering afterwards.