Indicted! Barry Bonds Busted by a Broken System
Barry Lamar Bonds faces thirty years in prison because the Department of Justice is a corroded husk of political decay. The baseball Home Run King has now been officially indicted on perjury and obstruction of justice charges and it only took three years and millions of tax dollars to make it happen.
The DOJ's entire case hinges on the ridiculous question of whether Bonds "knowingly" was on the juice, or lied on the witness stand when he said he took such substances "unknowingly." The actual indictment parses in language that would shame a
This is idiocy raised to the level of law. It makes me wonder what they're teaching at
Most of the media has focused on the prison release of Bonds' trainer and childhood friend Greg Anderson.
It's far more likely that
Mukasey believes that the pillars of these
The fact is that Bonds is under attack from a collection of torture-loving, Habeas Corpus shredding, illegal wire tapping, political operatives. The idea that a Barry Bonds indictment becomes the first act of Mike Mukasey's Justice Department only exposes Sens. Diane Feinstein and Chuck Schumer, and the other Democratic pols who backed his confirmation. They called him "a man of character" as well as "a strong leader, committed to depoliticizing the agency's operations." There is no evidence of character and leadership in this indictment; only the tawdry political desire for headlines.
Mukasey and friends may have worked themselves into a lather over the thought of their "Capone" behind bars. But they shouldn't be picking out his orange jumpsuit just yet. The indictment comes on the heels of the resignation of San Francisco US Attorney Kevin Ryan. Ryan was by all counts a Bush loyalist but he had earned the ire of the DOJ for, among other things, not indicting Bonds. He apparently didn't relish the thought of prosecuting the local hero in a
Because it appears that the DOJ has nothing new to say, the plan will be to scorch the jury pool by raising the temperature on the story. Already in the wake of the indictment, the White House felt the need to weigh in saying, among other insipid platitudes, "learly this is a sad day for baseball." You would never know that there are wars and occupations going on that might require some attention. This is like FDR delivering a fireside chat on the death of Fatty Arbuckle. It's also yet another sign that the justice system has more holes than the Tampa Bay Devil Rays.
Tomorrow (Friday) I will be demonstrating in front of Mukasey's Department of Justice along with thousands of my closest friends. We will march because they refuse to indict people for hanging nooses, or see the rape and torture of Megan Williams as a hate crime, or do anything to change the perception that justice means "just-us." But my vocal chords might be a little more raw than usual at days end. The idea that they have no time for Megan Williams, but invest years in the prosecution of Barry Bonds should make any good person of conscience utterly enraged.
Think about it: Barry Bonds joining Marion Jones in prison. Feel any safer yet?
[Dave Zirin is the author of "Welcome to the Terrordome:" with an intro by Chuck D (Haymarket). You can receive his column Edge of Sports, every week by going to http://zirin.com/edgeofsports/?p=subscribe&id=1. Contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org]