Friday, May 05, 2006

The Two Faces of the Mainstream Media

Face #1:
Representative Patrick Kennedy, son of famed teetotaler Edward Kennedy, held a press conference today (click to see the video) to explain the bizarre circumstances behind his auto accident early Thursday morning. As did his father before him, Kennedy seems to have weathered the storm and gained sympathy in the eyes of the media with his confession of addiction and depression.

U.S. Rep. Patrick Kennedy said Friday that he will enter a rehabilitation program after crashing his car on Capitol Hill a day earlier.

"I know that I need help," the Rhode Island Democrat said at an afternoon press conference, detailing what he called a long-term struggle with depression and addiction.

"I struggle every day with this disease, as do millions of Americans," Kennedy said.
In spite of the circumstances surrounding the incident, Kennedy was driven home without taking a breathalyzer test, and no charges are pending.

The report said that when [Capitol Police Sgt. Kenneth] Weaver approached Kennedy, he noticed that his "eyes were red and watery, speech was slightly slurred, and upon exiting his vehicle, his balance was unsure."

[...snip...]

[Officers on the scene were instructed] to drive Kennedy home. His car had been damaged, police said.

"I think he was extended a courtesy by virtue of his position," union President Lou Cannon told CNN.
A life of privilege and position has served this family well.


Face #2:
Last week, a deal was made between conservative radio host Rush Limbaugh and prosecutors in West Palm Beach, Florida. Back in 2003, authorities began investigating Limbaugh on charges of doctor shopping and prescription drug addition, predicated by allegations printed in the National Enquirer. CNN has this to say about the matter:

Limbaugh was booked on a single charge that was filed Friday, said Teri Barbera, a spokeswoman for the Palm Beach County Jail. He left about an hour later, after Limbaugh was photographed and fingerprinted and he posted $3,000 bail, Barbera said.

The radio giant's agreement to enter a diversionary program ends a three-year state investigation that began after Limbaugh publicly acknowledged being addicted to pain medication and entered a rehabilitation program. (Watch to see who was the 'winner' in this deal-- 3:54)

[...snip...]

Before his own problems became public, Limbaugh had decried drug use and abuse and mocked President Clinton for saying he had not inhaled when he tried marijuana. He often made the case that drug crimes deserve punishment.

[...snip...]

Limbaugh reported five years ago that he had lost most of his hearing because of an autoimmune inner-ear disease. He had surgery to have an electronic device placed in his skull to restore his hearing. But research shows that abusing opiate-based painkillers also can cause profound hearing loss.
Media reports this week seemed extremely disappointed that Limbaugh will not be rotting in prison.

2 Comments:

Anonymous Chris from Victoria, BC said...

Background info: According to two independent sources, Kennedy probably lied about not using alcohol:

Capital Police incident report states Kennedy under influence of alcohol
Bar hostess says Kennedy drinking that night

As I've pointed out elsewhere, if he lied to the police about this, that was obstruction of justice.

However, there is a much more serious side to this.

Kennedy told officers he was going to a House vote at 2:45 AM. As you may be aware, the U.S. Constitution protects Members of Congress from being arrested or detained by the police in most circumstances providing they are going to or from the House to vote. This is to protect from interference in the Democratic process by the administration or police.

He lied to the Capital Police officers and told them he was on his way to a vote at 2:45 AM... when there was no vote... which may have caused the Capital Police to confer with higher-ups and the higher-ups to order not to arrest Kennedy because of the U.S. Constitution... is Kennedy guilty of obstruction of justice: a felony?

If I was on a jury, I’d have to conclude he was.

He’s trying to escape legal jeopardy.

Q. Why did he lie about his drinking to the officers if he did so?
A. Obstruction of justice.

Q. Why did he lie about going to a vote at 2:45 AM if he wasn’t?
A. Abusing his power as a Congressman to subvert the U.S. Constitution and obstruct justice.

So now he’s saying he wasn’t drinking, but he was abusing prescription drugs. This despite the two previous sources I cited that state he was either “under the influence of alcohol” (the cops) or “drinking” (bar hostess).

And Kennedy’s own statement said that he took precisely the prescribed amount of his prescription drugs and no more.

His statements have changed multiple times, but it's his actions that night, which were in my opinion felonious.

If it walks like abusing his power to subvert the U.S. Constitution and obstruction of justice and if it talks like abusing his power to subvert the U.S. Constitution and obstruction of justice, it's a duck.


Key Point:

Patrick Kennedy abused his power as a Congressman to subvert the U.S. Constitution and obstruct justice when he lied to the Capital Police about going to a House vote at 2:45 AM when there wasn't any House vote at that time.

5/05/2006 5:54 PM  

Blogger Kyle said...

I loved Jay Leno's comments tonight: "The apple doesn't stagger far from the tree."

5/05/2006 11:58 PM  

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