Facebook Commentary: The problem of faith in politics

Lawyer Mike Avenatti defends attack on Judge Kavanaugh

An opinion as written on Facebook by Michael “Vass” Vasquez, on September 26, 2018 in reference to the latest developments on the Kavanaugh nomination: ** This includes an update, based on news released after the post was created **

At this moment, an unsubstantiated claim has gained massive traction on the internet and is considered true by some. The man involved has stated that the claim is false and detractors balk at the claim. Supporters say that the claim needs to be believed without question – even as the lack of proof looms large.

Sound familiar? How about this quote –

“This is completely false. It never happened; it is a total fabrication. None of it is true.”

How about this quote –

“This is just crazy that somebody can just tweet something out like this, or post it, and people just take it as truth. It’s crazy.”

Was that Judge Kavanaugh? No, it’s Mike Avenatti.

But the point remains, It’s Wednesday, 4Chan says they pranked Avenatti. He claims they didn’t. So far the hyped 3rd accuser has not surfaced.

In a bigger point, belief without fact is faith. Faith in politics is insanity. Insanity draws eyeballs and clicks. Clicks draw media. Media pushes belief without facts.

The consequences of all this is far bigger than a questionable lawyer. This affects Due Process, legal precedence, the 2018 election and 2020 as well. It’s about using the public and social media – and the impact of censorship and compelled speech of social media.

We are in a dark place in this nation.

Update after the release of a 3rd accuser, Julie Swetnick:
Julie Swetnick - 2rd accuser against Brett Kavanaugh

So Avenatti did provide an accuser – timed for maximum impact. This does not change my earlier statement from today about him, or more importantly about the circus that is the Kavanaugh confirmation.

I have read the statement from Julie Swetnick, and it causes pause. Like any legal document, it must be read carefully – without the emotional hype media is eager to give it for a ratings boost.

The statement is about actions 37-38 years ago. The statement does not say that Kavanaugh did anything to Swetnick. It claims that Kavanaugh was present at a party where events occurred – which is not a claim of participation. It makes a claim of intoxification levels and personality without providing the context of the physical state of Swetnick at the time of observation. It claims that Swetnick was “aware”, but not a witness, of “spiked” drinks – without naming the source of this information nor her reaction to such knowledge at the time. The statement assumes, and interprets, interactions between Kavanaugh and others but not with Swetnick – nor does it clarify what Swetnick was doing at these events or her interactions (both addressing her state of mind and ability to detail the events claimed). The statement says Swetnick was a victim of rape – but does not say Kavanaugh was involved or present of said rape.

Looking at the statement without emotion, it does not confirm any prior allegation nor present a firm allegation of its own. At best it is circumstantial, and at worst irrelevant. There is no “smoking gun” of proof, but more than enough vagueness for a social media conviction if that is sought.

This latest statement furthers the trend of allegation = guilt. IF this, and the prior accusations, achieve the political goal of stopping the Kavanaugh nomination, then accusation = guilt will be cemented as legal precedent (even moreso than with Al Franken).

What this will mean in politics, and private business, is not clear. If applied to Keith Ellison, he too must immediately be removed from current and future elected office. Future nominations to SCOTUS, and any elected office, may well be skewed in a manner that is impossible for any candidate (male or female, or any sexual persuasion) to overcome. This may well severely chill both the quantity and quality of candidates, to say nothing of painting a target on every elected official at every level of Government.

Sexual assault is a serious subject, and perpetrators should be held accountable. But the circus that has become the Kavanaugh nomination appears to only harm victims and America.

Rating 3.00 out of 5

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