Coming Soon:

The following books by Robert Paul Wolff are available on Amazon.com as e-books: KANT'S THEORY OF MENTAL ACTIVITY, THE AUTONOMY OF REASON, UNDERSTANDING MARX, UNDERSTANDING RAWLS, THE POVERTY OF LIBERALISM, A LIFE IN THE ACADEMY, MONEYBAGS MUST BE SO LUCKY, AN INTRODUCTION TO THE USE OF FORMAL METHODS IN POLITICAL PHILOSOPHY.
Now Available: Volumes I, II, III, and IV of the Collected Published and Unpublished Papers.

NOW AVAILABLE ON YOUTUBE: LECTURES ON KANT'S CRITIQUE OF PURE REASON. To view the lectures, go to YouTube and search for "Robert Paul Wolff Kant." There they will be.

NOW AVAILABLE ON YOUTUBE: LECTURES ON THE THOUGHT OF KARL MARX. To view the lectures, go to YouTube and search for Robert Paul Wolff Marx."





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Thursday, January 23, 2020

THE TRIAL


1.         Say what you will, we can all agree that Adam Schiff is doing a brilliant job.  He won’t change any minds, as he well knows, but he is a class act, and I for one enjoy watching a virtuoso performance of any sort.

2.         There has been some stupid commentary about a grand witness swap, Hunter Biden for John Bolton.  The Republicans have 53 votes and they need 51 to call Hunter Biden as a witness.  The same 51 votes suffice to refuse to call John Bolton as a witness.  They don’t need the Democrats to agree to anything.  So why don’t they call Biden?

            Two reasons: First, calling any witness would prolong the trial sufficiently to delay the acquittal vote until after the State of the Union address.  At the present pace, the prosecution will finish tomorrow, the defense will finish Tuesday, Senator’s questions will conclude next Thursday, and then will come the vote on whether even to consider documents and witnesses.  A witness must be issued a subpoena.  He or she must then respond.  Then the witness must be deposed.  Then the witness must testify, and Senators must be able to ask questions.  The State of the Union address is scheduled for a week from Tuesday.  No way they will be done by then if they have even one witness.

            Second reason: It would play badly in the states where vulnerable Republican Senators are up for re-election.

            That is why Schiff keeps maliciously taunting the Republicans, inviting them to subpoena the documents and call the witnesses Trump is refusing to turn over.

1 comment:

LFC said...

Schiff is v. good (not that I've listened to every minute) and I think a couple of his colleagues from the House also are pretty good.

It seems to me they have made one or two missteps, however. The rhetoric about the U.S. as leader of "the free world" (this was in Hakeem Jeffries' presentation and elsewhere) is being laid on a little too thick for my taste and sounds like it comes out of the '50s or '60s; one can make the points about Ukraine and Russia without this self-congratulatory and simplistic (to put it charitably) overlay. For another thing, and this is a minor but annoying point, they continually refer to the Crowdstrike theory (i.e. Ukraine-interfered-in-2016-to-help-HRC) as a "debunked conspiracy theory," but the word "conspiracy" is not doing any proper work since, as Charles Pigden as I recall has pointed out here, all theories involving actions by more than one person involve "conspiracies". The Dems shd refer to Crowdstrike as a debunked theory, not a debunked conspiracy theory. (They've also correctly pointed out that it's been spread by the Russians and that Putin seeded, so to speak, Trump with it.)