Thursday, December 16, 2010

Birther Court Martial Days 2 and 3 equals Six Months for Lakin

that's all folks!

The Court Martial is over. Long story short: Lakin plead guilty to one charge, was found guilty of another, and was sentenced to six months confinement, dismissal from the Army, and the forfeiture of all pay and allowances.

This is essentially what those who actually KNOW something about the UCMJ -- as opposed to the online Legion of Dumb -- said was going to happen. Barack Obama could have come from Mars, and the de facto officer doctrine would still require Lakin to report for ordered. To say otherwise is to let freewheeling anarchy loose in a body that only works if people do what they're told. You'd think conservatives would know better...?

The real surprise was that Lakin pleaded guilty to one of the charges after they abandoned the Birther defense. I thought they were going to plead not guilty and throw Paul Rolf "Otis" Jensen under the bus. A little throwing did occur, but not a whole lot.

LTC Lakin stated that he didn’t say, “You had your chance,” in refusing to meet with COL Roberts. He said he would never say such a thing to COL Roberts. He believes that it was Paul Jensen who made that statement to LTC Judd.

(it has been pointed out that Jensen was not there when the reply was made, though)

The statement that Lakin (no longer LTC) was looking forward to making took the form of a question and answer session between him and his attorney. Towards the end, the attorney got pretty vicious -- possibly to elicit tears and genuine regret from his client in the hopes of influencing the sentencing body.

Mr. Puckett then became harsher still, referring to the “giant image” the members had seen “saying you invited this court-martial.” He asked, “How do you feel? Are you proud of that?” LTC Lakin responded, “No. It’s crushing. It’s crushing to my family.” Still more harshly, Mr. Puckett asked, “That little 3-year-old,” gesturing to the giant family photo still being projected on the wall. “How would that little 3-year-old feel about visiting you in jail on Christmas Day, if you’re even close enough for your family to see you.” And with that, the tears came. LTC Lakin said, “I’ve cried about this so many times. I’ve cried for a year. I can’t believe this is happening in this country.”


Turning harsh again, Mr. Puckett said, “It’s Judgment Day. You invited this court-martial, so you invited a sentence. Are we done disobeying orders, LTC Lakin?” LTC Lakin replied, “Yes, we are. Forever.”

The strategy didn't work so well, though.

The trial counsel who argued noted that in LTC Lakin’s unsworn statement, his focus was always on himself: how he was concerned about the President’s eligibility, how he felt his concerns needed to be addressed, and so on, until the moment came to accept responsibility — at which point the accused focused on other people and how they let him down or supposedly misled him. The prosecutor also noted that at no point during LTC Lakin’s tearful discussion of his family or during his apologia to the commander did LTC Lakin see fit to mention (the doctor who had to replace his sorry ass) or the hardships endured by anyone else as a result of LTC Lakin’s actions. (emphasis added)

The prosecution wanted 24 months (2 days for every day he skipped out on), dismissal from the Army (the equivalent of a dishonorable discharge) and, worst of all, the removal of his pay and pension. In the end, they got 1/4 of the time they asked for, but the dismissal and removal of pay and pension are going to be painful. There's also the insidious possibility that he could lose his license to practice medicine.

No one has gotten any kind of a statement from Lakin or his counsel (who had to fly to Italy for another case before sentencing was handed down). I'm sure Birtherstan has exploded by now, but I'm in no mood to navigate their moving goalposts and wade through their crocodile tears. This is one of those cases where justice was done, but nobody won.

At any rate, here's a massive thank you to the sites that have been blogging about this and providing information: CAAFlog, Oh For Goodness Sake, and Obama Conspiracy Theories, amongst others.

And here's mud in the eye of all Birthers who stopped by those places to tell us how this trial was going to end in victory for Lakin and Birtherdom, and defeat for the evil Usurper. That you were wrong, are still wrong, and are most likely to continue to be wrong goes without saying. I don't expect that to change anytime soon.

But your stupid windmill tilt has now claimed the freedom and livelihood of a decent man who, fooled by your drivel, threw himself on a grenade in the name of your cause. You should all be ashamed of yourselves.

As Oh For Goodness Sake put it:

For those who led this man and his family to destruction: for undermining military discipline and morale, for putting our troops at increased danger, for shaming our country–may you never sleep another night. He has gotten his sentence and will serve it. The rest of you will have to answer to your maker. Good luck with that

And good night, one and all.


Blogger Ralph said...

That's a good way to look at the fate of this mixed-up man. Even worse, a great number of confused people who just voted in a Republican Congress are going to be reaping the whirlwind -- and regretting it if they ever figure things out -- as a result of the idiotic tax cuts for the wealthy, and other such future non-benefits for voters, as insisted on by their legislators.

Sheesh! How gullible can some people be?

5:30 PM  
Blogger J. Edward Tremlett said...

When people are led to believe that their current woes can be blamed on one person who doesn't deserve it, or that the slow correction to those problems are being mishandled, they can be sheep-driven any which way you want -- usually to the polls, sometimes over a cliff, sometimes both at once.

6:41 PM  

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