Inciting a mob to invade the Capitol is not free speech

On Jan 6th I knew that incitement was going to be a key issue. I found Lee Rowland, an ACLU lawyer who made a video about incitement and asked what she thought. She said she thought Trump had crossed the line.


Last week I watched Chris Hayes’ experts praise the Impeachment brief by the house managers, then attack Trump’s. (A typo in the first line! 14 pages of Incoherence!) But attacking Trump’s lawyers’ incompetence isn’t enough. We need to make the case to regular people who don’t understand what incitement is and what it takes to fulfill a legal definition.

On the Feb 4th episode of Stay Tuned with Preet Bharara, he brought up the argument that Trump’s lawyers will make.

-Trump’s lawyers} will make some of these points beyond the procedural points, Donald Trump did not say, “Invade the Capitol.” Donald Trump did not say, “Break windows.” Donald Trump did not say, “Engage in violence.” Donald Trump did not say, “Insurrection.” He did not say, “Riot.” He didn’t say any of those things, does that make a difference? And if the impeachment lawyers on behalf of Donald Trump make that argument in full or form than I just made it, what’s the rebuttal to that?

At 36:49 Adam Schiff gives his thoughtful and articulate legal response. But Dan Goldman’s reply 40:40 is the one that hit home for me.

[Trump] talks like a mob boss. He is not going to use those words you referenced like, “Go execute an insurrection, go riot, go storm the Capitol.” He never would actually say those words, just like a mob boss would not say, “Go kill that person.” The mob boss would say, “Can you please take care of this?”

When he says, “Go fight.” Or, “If Mike Pence doesn’t do the right thing, bad things will happen.” That’s violent talk, everyone understands that. And if you have any question as to whether they understood it or not, just wait until we see all of the Parler videos from social media of the people who attended his rally, who were going to the Capitol and saying that the president told us to storm the Capitol. They understood what he was trying to say.

Trial 2 for Individual 1 (with Daniel Goldman and Adam Schiff)

I found this article two days later, it needs to be read and retweeted.

Yes, what President Trump did was incitement

 Opinion by Len Niehoff

Law professor Len Niehoff laid out the incitement criteria in the Detroit Free Press:

  • The speech must be directed toward producing action.
  • It must be likely to result in such action.
  • The action must be unlawful
  • And the action advocated for must be imminent.

Liehoff thinks Trump’s word and actions on Jan 6 meet these criteria.
I wrote Niehoff last week explaining why I want to see him on my favorite MSNBC shows.

I’ve found the MSM often goes out of their way to defend speech that falls in the category of threatening speech–and in this case speech that fits the criteria of incitement.

Please explain why incitement IS possible for Trump and explain how his words & actions up to and during the Jan 6th riot meet the criteria for incitement. I find it fascinating how much of this case will be about threats, both behind the scenes, public, real and/or perceived.

I want people to understand the legal, technical part of incitement so that when they hear the EMOTIONAL part of the riots, they don’t go into a defensive crouch thinking they have to defend the inciting or threatening speech because they think it is going against upholding the 1st Amendment or free speech.  

I’m not a lawyer, but I learned about the specifics of legal incitement  years ago, when I was working to defund RW media. I found out that what one radio host said didn’t meet all the criteria for incitement, since he wasn’t advocating for action that would be imminent. So when I watched Trump’s speech, and he told them to march to the capital, I knew that this fit the criteria for incitement.

Also, actual scholars and lawyers spoke out last week:

“Legally frivolous”: Over 140 lawyers, scholars slam Trump’s First Amendment defense

“The First Amendment is no defense to the article of impeachment leveled against the former President, because the First Amendment does not apply in impeachment proceedings; because the president does not have a First Amendment right to incite a mob and then sit back and do nothing as the hostile mob invades the Capitol and terrorizes Congress; or because, in context, President Trump engaged in unlawful incitement.”

The letter is great, but I really hope the media gets some PROSECUTORS on to talk about incitement because when I see 1st Amendment experts on they are always putting themselves in the shoes of the person saying something horrible.

The right loves to use any attack on their speech and actions as an opportunity to be aggrieved and turn around use the same criteria to attack the left.

I’ve already been seeing this in the Trump incitement case. “But BLM! PORTLAND! You liberals loved that! Kamala Harris set up defense funds for rioters!”  I’ve seen these comments on OANN and Newsmax lately.)

What you will be seeing next week will be campaigns to go after people on the left who they say incited a riot at BLM protests. Another thing that I learned when defunding the right wing media is that they will attack the people who interrupted their revenue stream. They will attempt to say we did the same things at they did — EVEN IF OUR WORDS AND ACTIONS DON’T FIT THE CRITERIA OF INCITEMENT.  And when we don’t have an clear understanding of what is incitement, the mainstream media picks it up “the controversy” and does a “both side do it” story.

I’ve taken actions to hold people and companies accountable for their violent rhetoric and threating speech. I’ve written a lot about threatening speech, violent rhetoric and what we can do to hold people accountable for them.  I looked for economic leverage points because they are the most powerful in a country that cares about money above all else. IT WORKS. As we have seen recently with the voting machine defamation lawsuits, when someone get in the way of the revenue stream, things happen.

But I also know that focusing on the money can’t be the only method, the RW media moved to get funding by Dark Money and hides under the cover of monopolies to push an agenda. (Reminder the New York Post loses 60-100 million dollars EVERY YEAR!)

Will Trump be convicted for incitement? I don’t know, as Schiff and Goldman said on the podcast, the senators have already made up their minds and they are making a political decision. I’ve always believed that when plan A doesn’t work you need to have plan B, C and D ready. So the other thing that I hope Professor Liehoff or Prosecutors talk about during the trial is what else can we do because the jury is rigged?

For example, when I found that the local radio host didn’t meet the specific criteria for incitement, I went to plan B and contacted his management AND the insurance carrier for the radio station. I sent them links to all the violent rhetoric and language from the host and the context of his words.  I also copied the SF District Attorney, Kamala D. Harris.

Before the actual event happened the host suddenly started talking about being peaceful. I also noted that that was the last event that he organized through the station. 

I want Trump to face multiple consequences for all this horrific words and actions, I hope that they bust him on incitement on Jan 6th.  As Schiff said, we need to learn from what happened.

Adam Schiff:

And I continued to worry that if he escapes accountability in this impeachment now, he will feel once again at liberty to engage in new and more destructive conduct, in just the way that we warned during the last trial, that if he was left in office, we could expect him to try to cheat again. If he’s not disqualified from office, we can expect that in four years, he may very well try to cheat in new and more destructive ways.

Let’s be prepared for a failure to convict and commence with the other cases against him. If he gets convicted for felony money laundering he won’t be able to hold office either! Keep prosecuting him for all of his other crimes.

6 Steps To Defund GOP Seditionists #DefundSeditionists

Last night Brian Williams said “Big corps don’t like to be associated with seditionists.” He was talking about the corporations who have suspended donations to any member of Congress who objected to the certification of the Electoral College vote. This campaign was spearheaded by Judd Legum and his new publication Popular Information.

Popular Information contacted 144 corporations that, through their corporate PACs, donated to one or more of these eight Senators in the 2020 election cycle. Popular Information asked if they would continue to support these Senators in the future. In response, three major companies said they would stop donating to any member of Congress who objected to the certification of the Electoral College vote. – Major corporations say they will stop donating to members of Congress who tried to overturn the election – Jan 10, 2021 by Judd Legum and Tesnim Zekeria

https://act.newmode.net/action/color-change/seditioncaucus Image by @leahmillis via Rueters

1. BREAKING

3 major corporations say they’ll stop donating to members of Congress who tried to overturn the election

BlueCross BlueShield (@BCBSAssociation)

Marriott (@MarriottIntl)@CommerceBank

Follow along for more on these 3 plus 141 other corpshttps://t.co/r4Z4TjJUCe

— Judd Legum (@JuddLegum) January 10, 2021

I jumped on this . . . → Read More: 6 Steps To Defund GOP Seditionists #DefundSeditionists

Companies suspend donations to Republicans who challenged Biden’s certification

In the wake of the U.S. Capitol attacks, four major corporations said they are suspending contributions through their corporate PACs to Republican lawmakers they’ve previously backed who challenged the certification of President-elect Joe Biden’s victory. – Jan 10, 2021 Jemima McEvoy – Forbes.

Marriott International @MarriottIntl, Blue Cross Blue Shield @BCBSAssociation, Commerce Bancshares and Citibank @Citi all told Popular Information, a political newsletter run by ThinkProgress founder and editor Judd Legum, that they will stop donating to any member of Congress who objected to the certification of the Electoral College vote.

They listed other companies that are reviewing their donations, but I took those four and looked into their donations record for Nebraska Representative Adrian Smith (R) District 3 who voted to challenge Biden’s certification. (The Guardian lists him as one of the 120 who objected to the certified results in Arizona and Pennsylvania). He hasn’t made a public comment since January 6th.

U.S. Rep. Adrian Smith from Nebraska’s 3rd Congressional District was the only member of the Nebraska congressional delegation to vote against formally validating Joe Biden’s presidential election victory. CHRIS MACHIAN, THE WORLD-HERALD

He got $13,000 from Citigroup 2014-2020 (link to 2020). Blue Cross Blue Shield . . . → Read More: Companies suspend donations to Republicans who challenged Biden’s certification

Twitter must enforce their policy to remove or flag COVID-19 misinfo. Start with Gov. Noem’s retweet.

Twitter has a policy that can be used to remove or flag COVID-19 misinfo, but not everyone knows how to use it. To illustrate how this policy can be used I wrote a letter to Joshua Clayton, South Dakota’s Department of Health State Epidemiologist. On Dec 22 Governor Noem retweeted the following thread by Justin Hart. It disputes the efficacy of a mask mandate. (Twitter Link)

@TwitterSafety Enforce your policy on @justin_hart RT “We will label or remove false or misleading information about: Personal protective equipment (PPE) such as claims about the efficacy and safety of face masks to reduce viral spread”https://t.co/BLHAtBPdRj@suekroll https://t.co/BNnqGTg9cQ

— Spocko (@spockosbrain) December 22, 2020

Do mask mandates work? See the evidence for yourself👇 https://t.co/97YnuGf0if

— Governor Kristi Noem (@govkristinoem) December 21, 2020

Do you, the state epidemiologist, agree with this “evidence“? Does the South Dakota Department of Health agree with this analysis? If you disagree, what steps has your agency taken to prevent misinformation about this serious public health crisis from being distributed by the Governor?

I know you are busy, I’m only contacting you because your communications director, Derrick Haskins, has been gone since Nov. 3 (although . . . → Read More: Twitter must enforce their policy to remove or flag COVID-19 misinfo. Start with Gov. Noem’s retweet.

Use Vaccinations to Force Govs to Pass Mask Mandates

Everyone wants to show the happy videos of people getting vaccine shots. Especially the Governors in the 12 states that haven’t passed mask mandates. They will crow about how Their President got them the vaccine. Not said, but implied, is that their refusal to pass a mass mandate was justified before and is not necessary now.

The Experts say we will still need masks for months and to not relax the mask protocols. How do you send that message?

Method 1 Have the top medical experts tell the Governors behind the scenes, “You don’t get to be part of the vaccination press conference unless you pass a mask mandate.”

People in the public health medical community still want to believe that Governors will respond to facts and science. They won’t. Withholding good PR at a press conference isn’t withholding their vaccine, just the reflected success of a vaccine. But since most public health experts don’t want to be this direct I suggest:

Method 2 COACH THE MEDIA ON HOW TO ASK the Governor why there is no mask mandate and won’t be. Prep the experts to point out the EXCESS DEATHS that will happen because there is no MASK . . . → Read More: Use Vaccinations to Force Govs to Pass Mask Mandates

Stay Alive! Stop Accepting Trump’s Failed COVID Policies

While watching the videos of people traveling home for Thanksgiving I heard experts say spikes in cases and deaths have happened after every major holiday since the pandemic started. They also pointed to increases in cases and deaths after the Sturgis Rally and Trump’s rallies.

I wondered, why doesn’t someone use the hard data from previous holidays to put pressure on Governors in states like South Dakota and Nebraska to make changes NOW?

And since data isn’t enough for some people, why doesn’t someone shoot videos of coffins and ICU wards to play on TV every night and social media during the day? It’s because too many people don’t want to believe that there are people who are willfully and maliciously spreading misinformation which leads to sickness and death.

People who are doing public health communications believe in the model that “good speech drives out bad speech” that is partially correct, but what is also correct is that there needs to be campaigns and methods to deal with the people who are willful spreading dangerous misinformation. It is a threat to the health and safety of Americans. It constitutes threatening speech and threatening speech is NOT protected speech.

. . . → Read More: Stay Alive! Stop Accepting Trump’s Failed COVID Policies

We’ve adapted to the velocity of COVID-19 deaths. That needs to stop.

Americans have adapted to the velocity of deaths from COVID-19. We need to understand our perceptions have been distorted, so we can act urgently and stop accepting the obstructing behavior of politicians and acceptance by the media.

Like in a war, the number of deaths in the early days that were seen as horrific, now seem normal. I was thinking of a way to talk about this when I found this piece in The Association for Psychological Science.

Too Fast, Too Slow: Judging–And Misjudging–Speeds

This distortion of perception applies to speeding in a car, but also when people watch fast videos for awhile and then normal speed ones.

It’s happens in freeway driving. You leave a highway to take an off-ramp, the fast speeds seem more normal than slower ones, and going the legal limit seems especially slow.

How do we get back to the urgency of action in the early days to a GREATER urgency to act NOW to prevent MORE deaths?

Hammer ALL Governors to push mask mandates NOW & other public health actions People are dying! Stop waiting for elections to be certified.

Hammer GOP officials for allowing Trump to mope while people die My . . . → Read More: We’ve adapted to the velocity of COVID-19 deaths. That needs to stop.

Study: Rallies led to 30K COVID cases, 700 deaths. Make Trump pay for holding them

Stanford Researchers: Trump Rallies Led to 30,000 COVID-19 Infections, 700 Deaths

According to their research, 18 rallies held between June 20 and September 22 led to more than 30,000 confirmed cases of COVID-19. The researchers also concluded that the rallies “likely led” to more than 700 deaths, although not necessarily among those who attended the events. -Slate October 31

The Effects of Large Group Meetings on the Spread of COVID-19: The Case of Trump Rallies B. Douglas Bernheim, Nina Buchmann, Zach Freitas-Groff, Sebasti´an Otero* PDF link to abstract

Trump rallies that led to sickness and death of his rally goers and others in the community has been proven. Why are they still allowed to continue? They need to be stopped. I know people throw their hands up and say, “It’s too late, there is nothing we can do now to stop them.” Okay, if that’s the case then what’s your next step? Make the Trump campaign pay a price for this suffering and death to the communities they infected.

During Trump’s Tampa Rally the fire department was called to cool off the crowd. EMT took multiple people to the hospital for heat stroke. Who paid for . . . → Read More: Study: Rallies led to 30K COVID cases, 700 deaths. Make Trump pay for holding them

When Trump’s enablers are prosecuted Alec Baldwin can give this speech

“Generations to come will remember this decade. If we cannot eliminate the cause and prevent the repetition of these barbaric events this century may yet succeed in bringing the doom of civilization.

The time has come for final judgment and if the case I present seems hard and uncompromising then it is only because the evidence makes it so. A glance at the dock will show that despite quarrels among themselves each defendant played a part that fitted in with every other and all advanced a common plan.

It was these men among millions of others, and it was these men leading millions of others, who built up Donald Trump. They intoxicated him. He, of the psychopathic personality, with power and adulation. They fed his hates, aroused his fears. They put a loaded gun in his eager hands.

It was left to Trump to pull the trigger. When he did, they all at that time, applauded. Trump’s guilt stands admitted by some defendants reluctantly by some, vindictively. But Trump’s guilt is the guilt of the whole dock and of every man in it. These defendants now ask this tribunal to say they are not guilty of planning, executing, . . . → Read More: When Trump’s enablers are prosecuted Alec Baldwin can give this speech

Bush wore an earpiece at 2004 debate but the NYTimes killed the story

Did you spot this tweet this morning from Eric Trump?

Check his ears!!! 🦻🏻 https://t.co/b79a5420Oa

— Eric Trump (@EricTrump) September 29, 2020

What was THAT about? They are trying to accuse Biden of getting wireless info from someone off camera, just like George W. Bush was accused of doing back in 2004 during his John Kerry Debate. NASA photo analyst: Bush wore a device during debate Physicist says imaging techniques prove the president’s bulge was not caused by wrinkled clothing. Salon, October 30, 2004 by Kevin Berger

Typical Trump projection, when you can’t win on merit, cheat. But first they accuse the other of cheating, knowing that the press go for the “both sides” and the left will have to defend themselves from not cheating and if they the submit to the baseless claims Team Trump is ready to show THEY didn’t cheat (THIS time, in THAT way.) That’s what’s behind the “Biden’s on drugs! Biden’s demented!” attacks.

The media are trained to go through the ridiculous process no matter how outrageous. If they decline? “What do they have to hide?”

But what this attack reminded me how of the time in 2004 when Bush was . . . → Read More: Bush wore an earpiece at 2004 debate but the NYTimes killed the story