What Might Have been

Donald Trump is backing away from his call for a special prosecutor to look into the activities of Bill and Hillary Clinton and the criminal organization, Clinton Foundation, that they run. I firmly believe that if a credible investigation were to be carried out with the intent to prosecute the top charge would be treason with the inevitable sentence, death for both of them. Couldn’t happen to nicer people.

King Edward I, knew how to take care of political adversaries. William Wallace was tried, convicted and executed for treason. On the day of the execution, Wallace was stripped and dragged naked through the streets London to the Elms at Smithfield. Once there he was hanged. Hanging, in those days, involved no drop to speak of and a very short stool. It was customary for the condemned to tip the hangman so that he might hurray the condemned along. Without outside assistance the condemned slowly strangled and could easily survive for twenty minutes or more. As intended, Wallace survived, he was then taken from the gallows, emasculated and disemboweled. There seems to be controversy whether his guts were burned or fed to the dogs. He was then beheaded, almost done. His corpse was then quartered. I am not sure whether this was fuction of butchering, or if it involved draft horses attached to various limbs and then sent on their merry way. The parts were then gathered up, dipped in tar and dispatched to various points within Great Britain.

My English DNA is okay with this method of execution. Certain aspects of the ritual might have to be modernized. Dragging through the streets and the ensuing blood trail poses two problems, first there is the stop and go traffic made worse by such a procession and then blood borne pathogens, the clean up would be very expensive. Dragging through the streets is out. Hanging is problematic. We have since learned how to hang people properly and it involves a long fall and short rope. Modern methods would be too fast for historical precedent. But something old, something new. Hanging by the heels from a lamp post ala Mussolini and girlfriend, some fiesta music, baseball bats, blindfolds would make it a true multicultural event, with enough left over for the next event. Again we are stymied, somebody is sure to insist on medical professionals and the medicos are sure to point to the Hippocratic oath. As I address each problem posed, I find that I am less and less enthused about the whole idea of execution. I am feeling a conflict.

It has been attributed to Benjamin Franklin that what the English failed to realize is not only did we change our address when we came to America but we also changed who we were as a people. We still spoke English, used English measurement, followed English law and followed English customs. But our sensibilities had changed, in some subtle ways we were no longer English but a new race. Gone was the divine right of kings, class distinctions were breaking down, people had rights. Americans began to develop a sense of “fair play”.

Unlike people on the continent, we didn’t settle political differences by throwing our opponent in dungeons. Compared to the French Revolution, the American Revolution was relatively bloodless when it came to payback for loyalist Americans.

This started me thinking and then researching. Not serious research, I used Wikipedia so all I can say with certainty is the event took place, the result probably happened and the principles may or may not have been involved. Since the beginning of the republic, America has had riots,  rebellions, revolts, protests, actions, deserters and draft evaders.

A quirk of the American character, since the beginning is the government, in general, has been pretty magnanimous. In case after case, beginning with the John Fries Rebellion (/frz/), also called Fries’s Rebellion, the House Tax Rebellion, the Home Tax Rebellion and, in Deitsch, the Heesses-Wasser Uffschtand, was an armed tax revolt among Pennsylvania Dutch farmers between 1799 and 1800. It was the third of three tax-related rebellions in the 18th century United States, the earlier two being Shays’ Rebellion (central and western Massachusetts, 1786–87) and the Whiskey Rebellion (western Pennsylvania, 1794). It was commemorated in 2003 with a Pennsylvania historical marker erected in Quakertown, Pennsylvania, where it first erupted. Followed by the The Paper Money Riot, or Exeter Rebellion, was an armed uprising in Exeter, New Hampshire, on September 20, 1786. Following the American Revolution,  A group calling themselves Regulators called for the printing of paper money, believing that issuing paper notes on credit would help to stimulate the state’s economy. Though they were indicted, they were immediately pardoned. Any rebels who were also militiamen were dismissed.

Who can forget the Whiskey Rebellion (also known as the Whiskey Insurrection) was a tax protest in the United States beginning in 1791 during the presidency of George Washington. The so-called “whiskey tax” was the first tax imposed on a domestic product by the newly formed federal government. It became law in 1791, and was intended to generate revenue to help reduce the national debt, two ringleaders were sentenced to death by hanging, but they were pardoned by President Washington.[105] Pennsylvania state courts were more successful in prosecuting lawbreakers, securing numerous convictions for assault and rioting.[106]

Brigham Young founded Salt Lake City and served as an early leader of the Mormon Church, but he also ran afoul of federal law for his renegade behavior on the western frontier. Worried that Young and the Mormons would turn Utah into a theocracy, in 1857 President James Buchanan dispatched an army expedition to retake control of the territory. The affair was largely bloodless, but it was blighted by a September 1857 incident in which a group of Mormons killed over 100 civilian members of a California-bound wagon train. Young and his followers later received a full pardon from President James Buchanan as part of a peace compromise with the federal government.

Socialist politician Eugene Debs garnered nearly 1 million votes in the 1920 presidential election, even though he conducted his campaign from the inside of a jail cell. Debs was probably treated the harshest of the group of political prisoners.The famed labor organizer and pacifist had been arrested in 1918 after he gave a speech questioning U.S. involvement in World War I and encouraging resistance to the military draft. Charged with sedition and violation of the Espionage Act, he was sentenced to 10 years in prison and disenfranchised for life. Harding commuted Debs’ prison sentence to time served, he also considered the elderly politician guilty of his crime and refused to issue a full pardon. Debs died in 1926, but his citizenship was later posthumously restored by a 1976 act of Congress.

James Madison, Andrew Johnson issued mass pardons for pirates and Confederate soldiers, including some of the conspirators in the Lincoln assassination. 

Harding, Coolidge, Roosevelt and Truman pursued a policy of selective pardons on a case by case basis. Roosevelt did a mass pardon for WWI defendants that had completed their prison sentences. 

At the war’s end President Truman refused to grant a general amnesty for military deserters or draft evaders, and none has been granted since. Truman did, however, grant a number of limited pardons. The first, granted on December 24, 1945, pardoned civilian prisoners who had volunteered for military service and who upon completion of a year’s duty or more received an honorable discharge. The effect of the pardon was to restore their full civil and political rights.

The second Truman pardon was granted to 1,523 draft evaders who had served or were serving prison terms. Like the first, this was a Christmas Eve pardon, 

Sept. 16, 1974 | Conditional Amnesty for Vietnam Draft Dodgers and Military Deserters

On Sept. 16, 1974, President Gerald R. Ford issued a proclamation that offered amnesty to those who evaded the draft during the Vietnam War. Mr. Ford also granted amnesty to those in the military who deserted their duty while serving. However, the amnesty came with certain conditions, namely that those involved agreed to reaffirm their allegiance to the United States and serve two years working in a public service job.

President Carter Pardons Vietnam War Protesters

The day after he was sworn in as president, Jimmy Carter issued Executive Order 11967, pardoning anti-Vietnam War protesters facing federal criminal charges. His order involved the dismissal of all pending criminal charges related to violations of the selective service law between August 1964 and March 1973. Anyone unable to reenter the U.S. because of a violation of the selective service act would now be able to enter, as would be any other alien. Finally, any person granted conditional clemency, or granted a pardon, under President Gerald Ford’s plan, announced on September 16, 1974, would be eligible for a pardon under the terms of Carter’s order. Carter also issued Proclamation 4483, which restated Ford’s executive order.

Richard Nixon famously resigned from office in August 1974 amid accusations of malfeasance related to the Watergate scandal. But while there was a possibility that Nixon could have been prosecuted and even jailed, he was granted a full pardon by new President Gerald Ford only weeks after stepping down. Ford’s offer of clemency came before Nixon had officially been charged with any misdeeds, and covered all federal crimes the former president had “committed or may have committed or taken part in” during his terms in office.

At the time, many agreed that Ford’s pardon was necessary to help the nation move forward from an era of scandal and abuse of power, but others argued it had only served to stymie a much-needed investigation into presidential corruption. Pardoning Nixon would ultimately go down as one of the most controversial acts of Ford’s presidency, and may have even contributed to his defeat in his 1976 bid for reelection.

It must be pointed out that Hillary Clinton’s first serious breach of ethics if not law was while working on the Watergate Committee. As a young attorney she felt so strongly that Nixon should be impeached that she tampered with records that led to her being released. Her former boss regretted that he did not fire her and initiate Bar proceedings against her to strip her of her law license.

Feature or bug the American public character is such that when it comes to political trials authorities are quick to take action and once the immediate problem is addressed willing to walk away either not prosecuting or pardoning and commuting sentences. This is not a case of not prosecuting the “high and mighty” because the “fix is in”.

In some states, Massachusetts, New York, Pennsylvania, Illinois, Ohio and California politicians are convinced that incarceration in a Federal Correctional Institute (FCI) is a perk of their retirement system. Many of them are convicted of the same crimes that Bill, the serial rapist and Hillary would likely be charged with, but there is a difference. Apologists for the Clintons insist that any prosecution of the Clintons is political in nature and has nothing to do with running afoul of the penal code.

I don’t like it, but I’m beginning to accept that a criminal prosecution of the Clinton’s is unlikely. That does not preclude an investigation of the Clinton Foundation for malfeasance. I think there is ample precedent out there to allow a sitting President to conclude further prosecution is counter productive.

But a King Edward I, type ending touched up for modern times would have been an appropriate end for a sorted forty year run in politics. What can you say when the serial rapist half of the pair comes off as the nice guy? To do it full justice would require the production sensibility of a Federico Fellini and with a soundtrack by Frank Zappa. They are both gone, so you are stuck with me.

The Execution of Bill and Hillary, a farce in three parts. Opening sequence, fiesta music, young girls in colorful dresses and boys in white shirts armed with rubber hoses filled with cocaine. In the background are Cartel henchmen dismembering a body in order to feed it to circling vultures. This highlights achievements in Bill and Hillary’s career, NAFTA for Bill (Yeah, it was Bush’s baby,but Bill signed it into law), Hillary’s encouragement of illegal immigration, and finally Bill throwing his brother to the local narcotics task force. At some point the hoses break and cocaine floats through the air like a snow storm. Watch closely, does Blow Job Bill inhale?


They are released from the pinata and laid out where a pack of kill crazed, blood thirsty Chihuahuas are set upon them for the ritual disemboweling.

The finale comes with the clean up crew to quarter the carcases  and drag them from the field.


A fitting end to a couple who will go down in history with the likes of Marie Antoinette and Louis XVI of France, Adolph Hitler and Eva Braun, Bonnie and Clyde, and Julius and Ethel Rosenberg. It could be that both will have more value to America revealed as the crooks and charlatans they really are