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http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2013-07-16/eric-holder-slams-stand-your-ground-laws-claims-self-defense-may-sow-dangerous-confl Eric Holder Slams "Stand Your Ground" Laws, Claims Self-Defense May "Sow Dangerous Conflict" Tyler Durden's pictureSubmitted by Tyler Durden on 07/16/2013 17:41 -0400 Department of Justice Florida US AG Eric Holder, who it appears is not busy committing perjury before Congress, or failing to prosecute one single TBTF bank due to their systemic nature, or eavesdropping on the AP, or recording every American electronic communication, or selling weapons to Mexican drug cartels, or generally using the constitution as one-ply toilet paper, has found some time to peddle his thoughts on the Trayvon Martin shooting at an NAACP convention in Orlando. So what did the head of the US department of justice say? He proceeds to blast "Stand your ground" laws, because, you see, having the right to self-defense is dangerous and may lead to escalations. No really: "Separate and apart from the case that has drawn the nation's attention, it's time to question laws that senselessly expand the concept of self-defense and sow dangerous conflict in our neighborhoods." In other words, Holder is spreading a very christian message: when slapped, present the other cheek. But it gets even more ridiculous: "By allowing—and perhaps encouraging—violent situations to escalate in public, such laws undermine public safety." Ideally, in Holder's world all Americans should just hand over all self-defense rights (because you never know - someone's eye may be poked out) and wait for the government to rescue them. More from the WSJ: Attorney General Eric Holder blasted "stand-your-ground laws" in the wake of the acquittal of George Zimmerman for fatally shooting Trayvon Martin—saying such laws cause more violence than they prevent. Mr. Holder, speaking to the NAACP Annual Convention in Orlando, Fla., not far from where Mr. Zimmerman was acquitted last week, took direct aim at stand-your-ground laws, which say a person can use force in self-defense without first attempting to retreat from the situation. In speaking out publicly against such laws for the first time, Mr. Holder is taking aim at the gun-rights groups that promote such laws and linking them to the death of Trayvon Martin. Twenty-five states, including Florida, have adopted some version of stand-your-ground laws. While the law was a factor in the initial investigation of the Martin shooting, lawyers for Mr. Zimmerman didn't base their defense on the law, arguing instead that their client had no option of retreat, and therefore the stand-your-ground principle didn't apply. The speech marked the second day in a row that Mr. Holder spoke publicly about the Martin killing. Mr. Zimmerman over the weekend was found not guilty of all charges in the case, a decision that sparked protests across the country, and some rioting in Los Angeles Monday night. Mr. Martin, a black teenager, was walking to his father's house in Sanford, Fla., from a nearby convenience store in the early evening when he was spotted by Mr. Zimmerman, a neighborhood-watch volunteer who thought Mr. Martin was suspicious. Mr. Zimmerman, who is Hispanic, called 911 and began following Mr. Martin, leading to a confrontation in which the 29-year-old Mr. Zimmerman shot the teenager. Mr. Holder's Justice Department is investigating Mr. Zimmerman to see if he should be charged with federal hate crimes or civil-rights violations, but legal experts say the chances of such charges being filed—or won in court—are small. And the punchline: "These laws try to fix something that was never broken," Mr. Holder argued, saying pre-existing self-defense law allowed the use of deadly force if no safe retreat is possible. If a person is attacked in their own home, there is no duty to retreat. In other words, to Mr. Holder, the best defense when fighting for one's life, when the option of running away even if chased by a bunch of rabid zombies, is harsh language. Frankly, how this man still gets a taxpayer funded salary is a myste
http://www.zerohedge.com/contributed/2013-06-03/holder-laid-groundwork-%E2%80%9Ctoo-big-jail%E2%80%9D-1999 CLICK ON LINK TO SEE RELATED LINKS EMBEDDED IN ORIGINAL ARTICLE Holder Laid the Groundwork for “Too Big to Jail” In 1999 Submitted by George Washington on 06/03/2013 17:34 -0400 Everyone knows that Eric Holder – the head of the Department of Not-Much Justice – has said that the big banks are too big to jail. And many people know that – prior to becoming the Attorney General – Holder was a partner at a big firm which did some despicable things to represent the big banks and MERS. But Holder’s see-no-evil act actually started more than a decade ago. Specifically, in 1999, as Deputy Attorney General, Holder wrote a memo arguing against prosecuting large financial service companies: Prosecutors may consider the collateral consequences of a corporate criminal conviction in determining whether to charge the corporation with a criminal offense. *** One of the factors in determining whether to charge a natural person or a corporation is whether the likely punishment is appropriate given the nature and seriousness of the crime. In the corporate context, prosecutors may take into account the possibly substantial consequences to a corporation’s officers, directors, employees, and shareholders, many of whom may, depending on the size and nature (e.g., publicly vs. closely held) of the corporation and their role in its operations, have played no role in the criminal conduct, have been completely unaware of it, or have been wholly unable to prevent it. Further, prosecutors should also be aware of non-penal sanctions that may accompany a criminal charges, such as potential suspension or debarment from eligibility for government contracts or federal funded programs such as health care. Whether or not such non-penal sanctions are appropriate or required in a particular case is the responsibility of the relevant agency, a decision that will be made based on the applicable statutes, regulations, and policies. Virtually every conviction of a corporation, like virtually every conviction of an individual, will have an impact on innocent third parties …. Matt Taibbi points out that – when the Department of Justice subsequently prosecuted accounting giant Arthur Andersen for covering up Enron’s fraudulent schemes – Anderson ran with Holder’s argument, and threatened the DOJ “using their employees as human shields”. Specifically, Andersen said that – unless the DOJ dropped the prosecution – innocent Andersen employees would lose their jobs. Andersen was prosecuted and convicted, and some innocent employees – as well as the big time fraudsters – lost their jobs. Since then, the Justice Department has gotten so gun-shy that we basically haven’t had any criminal indictments against a large financial services company since then. In the wake of the recent revelations that the big banks manipulate virtually every market in the world, and that HSBC blatantly laundered drug cartel money, Holder has said that we can’t indict big companies because that might harm the U.S. or world economy. And Matt Taibbi notes that – for the first time - Holder is now saying that not only can’t we indict the companies, but we can’t even indict any of the individual criminals at the companies. In other words, Holder is implementing a permanent shield for employees and executives at large institutions. The Big Banks and Commodities Future Trading Commission Conspired to Hide Speculation from Congress One of our favorite topics is the many ways that big banks manipulate prices. Last night, Rolling Stone financial writer Matt Taibbi gave some very interesting details about how the big banks have gamed commodities prices. For 60 to 70 years, the regulations preventing speculators from betting on commodities worked pretty well. Only commodity producers or buyers – you know, the people who are supposed set prices – could hedge their bets. But in the early 1990s, the big financial companies starting applying to the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) for “exemptions” … so that they could speculate on commodities. Specifically, they asked to be artificially treated as real commodity producers or consumers – even though they weren’t producing or buying commodities – so that they could “hedge” bets (in name only) on products they didn’t even possess. (Sound familiar?) In 1991, the CFTC issuing exemption letters. The first letter was written to J. Aron, a subsidiary of … Goldman Sachs. Pretty soon, every major bank in the U.S. was given an exemption. Congress didn’t know about the exemptions. Indeed, the House Agricultural Commission – which oversees the CFTC – didn’t even find out about the exemptions until 6 years later … in 1997. When a congressman on the Agricultural Commission asked the CFTC for a sample of one of the exemption letters, the CFTC official said he had to ask Goldman Sachs whether or not the CFTC could show a copy to Congress. In other words, the banks were already running D.C. by the 90s. Commodities speculation has exploded since the exemption letters were issues. For example, in 2003, there was only $29 billion in speculative activity in the commodities markets. By 2007-2008, there was over $300 billion in commodities speculation. Icelandic Parliament: Big Icelandic Banks Were Public Banks … Which Were Privatized FOR FREE Shortly Before They Tanked Birgitta Jonsdottir is a member of the Icelandic parliament. She knows a good deal about the financial crisis. Indeed, before being elected to parliament, she made a documentary about the collapse of Iceland’s economy as an investigative journalist. Last night, Jonsdottir (pronounced “yont-Daughter”) disclosed a stunning fact in a speech I attended: All our banks were actually public. They were privatized a few years prior to the financial crisis. Jonsdottir explained that Iceland’s banks grew to 5-7 times the size of the country’s GDP during the county’s brief bubble after privatization. And the Icelandic parliament – in a fact-finding report – later found that the bankers never paid anything to “buy” the banks from the government or the people. In other words, sweetheart deals and corruption meant that a handful of people looted the banks without paying a penny. America is analogous. The prosperity which our ancestors worked so hard to build – and the very vision of prosperity of the Founding Fathers – has been looted. Jonsdottir says that it wasn’t just the bankers who were corrupt … it was also the Icelandic politicians, media, academia … all of the people in a position of power. She points out that - as bad as things are in America - they were as bad in Iceland. And yet they took the bulls by the horn and turned things around