Let’s see, the federal government purposely sells guns to the Mexican drug cartels that are used to maim and kill law-abiding citizens of the United States and Mexico.
The federal government stonewalls efforts for transparency on the fiasco, and goes out of its way to shield those federal employees involved in the decision-making process that basically helped arm savage killers who are importing millions of dollars of illegal drugs into this county every day.
The same federal government spends close to $2 million trying to convict former San Francisco Giants player Barry Bonds on whatever they can because he may have used steroids to play a game.
No wonder so many rank-and-file Americans seem more convinced with each passing day that the federal government has run amok. This is no longer your grandfather’s government. This is a government that is a growing blob slouching toward total domination of the very people they are supposed to govern.
Government ideally should do for the masses what they can’t do as individuals. That covers clean and secure water, roads for commerce, wastewater treatment, security both foreign and domestic and even things that aren’t necessarily out of the capabilities of individual but that society benefits from when an organized approach is taken, such as education or justice.
Somehow I don’t think neighbors would gather together and demand that the federal government supply weapons to blood thirsty drug cartels or spend millions to persecute a man playing a boy’s game because he essentially was evasive about whether he cheated.
One doesn’t have to be a fan of Bonds to be repulsed at the federal government’s piranha-like prosecution mentality and its over-the-top attack.
Consider Assistant U.S. Attorney Matthew Parrella’s remarks. He called the judge’s sentencing of Bonds to 30-day home confinement as “almost laughable” for an athlete who made more than $192 million playing baseball. The income a person makes should have no relevance to his guilt or sentencing. The judge, for the record, handed Bonds the same sentence as she did two others involved. They were convicted of the same high treason of obstruction of justice by answering questions in a “misleading” manner not to incriminate themselves. They have occupations that typically bring in less than $100,000 a year.
Its true that Bonds should have been more forthright and clear but consider this: The Justice Department routinely uses the fact that people invoke their right to not self-incriminate by declining to answer questions as if it is an admission of guilt. You can’t win. Only the federal prosecutors and federal government can.
It gets worse. Parrella essentially argued before the judge that Bonds should get the maximum of 15 years for a repertoire of reasons that had nothing to do with the actual obstruction of justice charge including “he had mistresses throughout his marriages.”
Adultery must once again be a federal crime. So, Mr. Parrella, how many congressmen are you going to prosecute for not telling the whole truth or having a mistress?
Instead, Parrella and his brethren among the ranks of federal prosecutors are now turning their steroid scandal guns on Lance Armstrong.
Armstrong is suspected by some of using performance enhancing drugs to win the Tour de France. The alleged crime occurred in France. And it might be noted that the United Cycling Federation - which has a much tougher drug testing and tolerance policy than Major League Baseball, or the federal government of the United States for that matter - has no proof Armstrong was doping.
Yet we’re going to spend probably another $2 million going after Armstrong.
That should stop the flow of steroids.
This column is the opinion of managing editor, Dennis Wyatt, and does not necessarily represent the opinion of The Bulletin or Morris Newspaper Corp. of CA. He can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org or 209-249-3519.