The Brown/Coakley face-off is arguably the most critical and historic race in the already monumental 2010 election year. Two days left until the election.
We can change, with one election, the race off the cliff. Off the cliff. Help America fight the in-house enemy.
The odds are so great (facing the ginormous corrupt Democrat Massachusetts political machine), but the stakes could not be higher. Just on the face of it, without even looking at the vast differences in the two candidates, if Brown makes it, the fascists lose the super majority. He breaks the magical filibuster number. He can save America from IMMINENT ruin from statists and socialism. Brown, the "state Senator from Wrentham, would go to Washington as the '41st Vote,' ensuring that Democrats lose their short-lived supermajority in the upper chamber". (More here.)
But ................... let's look at Coakley anyway.
While it's most important to focus on the exceptional qualities and skills that Scott Brown will bring to the Senate, it is just as important to expose the ugly and disturbing resume of his unworthy opponent, Martha Coakley.
The thing is, the Democrats are so cocksure of their control, of the absolute corruption of the system and their systemic voter fraud apparatus, that they think they can run anyone, anything, with any awful history -- or worse yet, a mysterious opaque history (i.e. Obama) -- and win. They are not altogether wrong in that.
Previously I wrote of the debased Martha Coakley letting a vicious rapist out after his Dad gave to her campaign; I neglected to mention another ugly episode in the checkered career of Coakley.
Dorothy Rabinowitz had a column last Friday concerning the Amiraults, who were among the victims of the rather bizarre "witch hunts" that went on in the 80's over people who ran daycare centers and were accused of ritual rapes, devil worship, even baby sacrifices, etc. -- all of it based merely on the weird testimony of obviously coached and manipulated children. And in spite of the egregious nature of the alleged crimes, there was no physical evidence AT ALL. These were terrible persecutions of scores of people in a sort of fashionable prosecution spree.
Coakley is all for releasing true rapists with hot curling irons, but as for innocent people, that is a different story...
Read Rabinowitz's column here (hat tip Jan)
Read the whole terrible thing.....................Also there is a very revealing, in depth article archived in the Boston Globe here on Martha. It has quotes from her on all the controversial cases that are coming out to haunt her now.
The story of the Amiraults of Massachusetts, and of the prosecution that had turned the lives of this thriving American family to dust, was well known to the world by the year 2001. It was well known, especially, to District Attorney Martha Coakley, who had by then arrived to take a final, conspicuous, role in a case so notorious as to assure that the Amiraults' name would be known around the globe.
The Amiraults were a busy, confident trio, grateful in the way of people who have found success after a life of hardship. Violet had reared her son Gerald and daughter Cheryl with help from welfare, and then set out to educate herself. The result was the triumph of her life—the Fells Acres school—whose every detail Violet scrutinized relentlessly. Not for nothing was the pre-school deemed by far the best in the area, with a long waiting list for admission.
All of it would end in 1984, with accusations of sexual assault and an ever-growing list of parents signing their children on to the case. Newspaper and television reports blared a sensational story about a female school principal, in her 60s, who had daily terrorized and sexually assaulted the pupils in her care, using sharp objects as her weapon. So too had Violet's daughter Cheryl, a 28-year old teacher at the school.
But from the beginning, prosecutors cast Gerald as chief predator—his gender qualifying him, in their view, as the best choice for the role. It was that role, the man in the family, that would determine his sentence, his treatment, and, to the end, his prosecution-inspired image as a pervert too dangerous to go free.
The accusations against the Amiraults might well rank as the most astounding ever to be credited in an American courtroom, but for the fact that roughly the same charges were brought by eager prosecutors chasing a similar headline—making cases all across the country in the 1980s. Those which the Amiraults' prosecutors brought had nevertheless, unforgettable features: so much testimony, so madly preposterous, and so solemnly put forth by the state. The testimony had been extracted from children, cajoled and led by tireless interrogators.
Gerald, it was alleged, had plunged a wide-blade butcher knife into the rectum of a 4-year-old boy, which he then had trouble removing. When a teacher in the school saw him in action with the knife, she asked him what he was doing, and then told him not to do it again, a child said. On this testimony, Gerald was convicted of a rape which had, miraculously, left no mark or other injury. Violet had tied a boy to a tree in front of the school one bright afternoon, in full view of everyone, and had assaulted him anally with a stick, and then with "a magic wand." She would be convicted of these charges. Cheryl had cut the leg off a squirrel.
Other than such testimony, the prosecutors had no shred of physical or other proof that could remotely pass as evidence of abuse. But they did have the power of their challenge to jurors: Convict the Amiraults to make sure the battle against child abuse went forward. Convict, so as not to reject the children who had bravely come forward with charges.
Gerald was sent to prison for 30 to 40 years, his mother and sister sentenced to eight to 20 years. The prosecutors celebrated what they called, at the time "a model, multidisciplinary prosecution." Gerald's wife, Patricia, and their three children—the family unfailingly devoted to him—went on with their lives. They spoke to him nightly and cherished such hope as they could find, that he would be restored to them.
Hope arrived in 1995, when Judge Robert Barton ordered a new trial for the women. Violet, now 72, and Cheryl had been imprisoned eight years. This toughest of judges, appalled as he came to know the facts of the case, ordered the women released at once. Judge Barton—known as Black Bart for the long sentences he gave criminals—did not thereafter trouble to conceal his contempt for the prosecutors. They would, he warned, do all in their power to hold on to Gerald, a prediction to prove altogether accurate.
No less outraged, Superior Court Judge Isaac Borenstein presided over a widely publicized hearings into the case resulting in findings that all the children's testimony was tainted. He said that "Every trick in the book had been used to get the children to say what the investigators wanted." The Massachusetts Lawyers Weekly—which had never in its 27 year history taken an editorial position on a case—published a scathing one directed at the prosecutors "who seemed unwilling to admit they might have sent innocent people to jail for crimes that had never occurred."
It was clear, when Martha Coakley took over as the new Middlesex County district attorney in 1999, that public opinion was running sharply against the prosecutors in the case. Violet Amirault was now gone. Ill and penniless after her release, she had been hounded to the end by prosecutors who succeeded in getting the Supreme Judicial Court to void the women's reversals of conviction. She lay waiting all the last days of her life, suitcase packed, for the expected court order to send her back to prison. Violet would die of cancer before any order came in September 1997.
That left Cheryl alone, facing rearrest. In the face of the increasing furor surrounding the case, Ms. Coakley agreed to revise and revoke her sentence to time served—but certain things had to be clear, she told the press. Cheryl's case, and that of Gerald, she explained, had nothing to do with one another—a startling proposition given the horrific abuse charges, identical in nature, of which all three of the Amiraults had been convicted.
No matter: When women were involved in such cases, the district attorney explained, it was usually because of the presence of "a primary male offender." According to Ms. Coakley's scenario, it was Gerald who had dragged his mother and sister along. Every statement she made now about Gerald reflected the same view, and the determination that he never go free. No one better exemplified the mindset and will of the prosecutors who originally had brought this case.
Before agreeing to revise Cheryl's sentence to time served, Ms. Coakley asked the Amiraults' attorney, James Sultan, to pledge—in exchange—that he would stop representing Gerald and undertake no further legal action on his behalf. She had evidently concluded that with Sultan gone—Sultan, whose mastery of the case was complete—any further effort by Gerald to win freedom would be doomed. Mr. Sultan, of course, refused.
In 2000, the Massachusetts Governor's Board of Pardons and Paroles met to consider a commutation of Gerald's sentence. After nine months of investigation, the board, reputed to be the toughest in the country, voted 5-0, with one abstention, to commute his sentence. Still more newsworthy was an added statement, signed by a majority of the board, which pointed to the lack of evidence against the Amiraults, and the "extraordinary if not bizarre allegations" on which they had been convicted.
Editorials in every major and minor paper in the state applauded the Board's findings. District Attorney Coakley was not idle either, and quickly set about organizing the parents and children in the case, bringing them to meetings with Acting Gov. Jane Swift, to persuade her to reject the board's ruling. Ms. Coakley also worked the press, setting up a special interview so that the now adult accusers could tell reporters, once more, of the tortures they had suffered at the hands of the Amiraults, and of their panic at the prospect of Gerald going free.
On Feb. 20, 2002, six months after the Board of Pardons issued its findings, the governor denied Gerald's commutation.
Gerald Amirault spent nearly two years more in prison before being granted parole in 2004. He would be released, with conditions not quite approximating that of a free man. He was declared a level three sex offender—among the consequences of his refusal, like that of his mother and sister, to "take responsibility" by confessing his crimes. He is required to wear, at all times, an electronic tracking device; to report, in a notebook, each time he leaves the house and returns; to obey a curfew confining him to his home between 11:30 p.m. and 6 a.m. He may not travel at all through certain areas (presumably those where his alleged victims live). He can, under these circumstances, find no regular employment.
The Amirault family is nonetheless grateful that they are together again.
Attorney General Martha Coakley—who had proven so dedicated a representative of the system that had brought the Amirault family to ruin, and who had fought so relentlessly to preserve their case—has recently expressed her view of this episode. Questioned about the Amiraults in the course of her current race for the U.S. Senate, she told reporters of her firm belief that the evidence against the Amiraults was "formidable" and that she was entirely convinced "those children were abused at day care center by the three defendants."
What does this say about her candidacy? (Ms. Coakley declined to be interviewed.) If the current attorney general of Massachusetts actually believes, as no serious citizen does, the preposterous charges that caused the Amiraults to be thrown into prison—the butcher knife rape with no blood, the public tree-tying episode, the mutilated squirrel and the rest—that is powerful testimony to the mind and capacities of this aspirant to a Senate seat. It is little short of wonderful to hear now of Ms. Coakley's concern for the rights of terror suspects at Guantanamo—her urgent call for the protection of the right to the presumption of innocence.
If the sound of ghostly laughter is heard in Massachusetts these days as this campaign rolls on, with Martha Coakley self-portrayed as the guardian of justice and civil liberties, there is good reason.
The Justice Department job, however, didn't last long. Part of the problem was that Coakley missed the more gregarious, high-energy DA's office. Part of it was that she still wasn't in court enough. Although Coakley was involved in several ongoing corruption investigations, few made it to trial, and her hunger for action was unsated. In 1989, she returned to the DA's office.
"I really, really wanted to do the trial stuff,' she says with a shrug. "I wanted to do murders.'
Coakley didn't get murders. She got worse. She got child abuse. And she got it at a time when the nation was in deep, and very public, turmoil about the subject. Two years earlier, the Fells Acres case - in which Malden day-care operators Cheryl Amirault LeFave and her mother, Violet Amirault,were convicted of multiple counts of abuse stemming from the children's claims of, among other things, being molested with knives and tied naked to trees - had electrified the country.
Although nationally several high-profile convictions for sexual abuse have since been overturned, blamed both on overzealous prosecutors and flawed techniques for interviewing children, professional opinion remains divided over how much of what children say can be believed. Coakley bristles at the notion that frenzy over child abuse led to unjust convictions. Rather, she says, the reversals of some convictions stem from procedural issues unique to each case and should not be lumped together.
Just last year, Middlesex prosecutors acknowledged that the techniques used to interview children in the Fells Acres case, in which Cheryl Amirault LeFave's conviction was overturned and then reinstated, were less than perfect. Recently, substantial changes have been made in the procedures under Coakley's guidance. Now, for example, interviewers do not ask leading questions or react to what a child says.
Coakley, however, stands by the Fells Acres convictions and says she thinks it highly unlikely that children manufacture stories of sexual abuse.
"No question, kids can lie,' she says. "You can say, `Did you take a cookie?' And they say, `No,' and they have chocolate all over their face. But it is totally difficult for a 6-year-old to fabricate a set of smells and the feel of something that they have never been through before. Kids cannot fabricate a comprehensive lie about putting their fingers in their grandmother's vagina and say it feels slimy and tell that to an interviewer and say it in court again six months later.'
Child abuse cases are among the most difficult to prosecute. And while they took a substantial toll on Coakley, she had also been undergoing severe personal stress during the 1990s. Her father died in 1993, her mother in 1995. The following year, her brother, who had suffered from bipolar disorder for years, hanged himself shortly after he was discharged from a hospital. Asked about her mother, Coakley starts to cry and walks away from an interview to compose herself.
"We are all struggling with that grief,' says Mary Coakley-Welch, Coakley's sister. "It is very close to the surface.'
By the end of 1995, Coakley was burnt out.
Defense attorneys are generally unwilling to talk publicly about Coakley, in whose hands their clients' fates may lie, but some regard her as having been unrelentingly zealous. Charges of overreaching echo particularly in the Souza case, which Coakley helped prosecute.
Last year, a judge ruled that the elderly couple did not have to go to prison, as prosecutors had wanted, but could remain under house arrest. In doing so, the judge revoked their original prison sentence of 9 to 15 years and placed them on probation until 2002, causing some to criticize Coakley for slamming the couple too hard in the first place.
"Martha Coakley was one of the people who believed that all victims and children were telling the truth when they said they were abused,' declares lawyer Robert George, who defended the Souzas. "Did she go too far in prosecuting the Souzas? Absolutely. I don't think Martha Coakley ever stopped going 100 miles an hour in her efforts to convict them.'
Hmmmmmmmmmm, but a rapist with a hot curling iron? That's OK.
Coakley continues to argue that the Souzas should be behind bars, saying, "I didn't feel at all there was pressure for us to go on some witch hunt to clean up child abuse. If you look across the board at the abuse cases we did, there are a lot we didn't go after. I'm pretty proud of my record on that.'
Coakley might have been seen as nodding slightly to the East last month when she announced that she would not fight to have Cheryl LeFave, convicted of molesting children in the Fells Acre case, return to prison.
Another case that might be a measure of Coakley's tenor, that of Stephen Fagan, has brought her as much criticism as praise. Under the terms of a plea agreement, Fagan pleaded guilty in May to kidnapping his two daughters 20 years ago in return for a suspended prison sentence, five years of probation, and a $100,000 charitable donation.
Coakley took a lot of heat. She defended the deal, saying that a trial would have degenerated into a painful public airing of the family's grievances with no assurance that Fagan would go to prison at the end. Plus, she says, "there were two young girls who never asked for this and who had made it very clear that they did not want a trial.' Protesters called the sentence a "slap in the face,' while newspaper columnists erupted that she'd let Fagan get away a second time.
No one was as incensed as Fagan's former wife, Barbara Kurth. Although Kurth consented to the terms of the deal in a letter written by her lawyer months earlier, she now claims she was strong-armed by prosecutors who said that she would harm her daughters by holding out for a trial. "Martha Coakley said, `We will take a plea of guilty whether you like it or not. It doesn't matter what you think,'' says Kurth, a researcher at the University of Virginia Medical School. "She has denied this up and down. But that is what she said. ... I think Martha Coakley took the easy way out. Martha gets what she wants, which is a conviction, and the case disappears.'
Coakley won't discuss the negotiations, but she adamantly denies the statement Kurth attributes to her. The case, however, clearly troubles her. "If the public says I didn't do the right thing, so be it,' she sighs. "But when the victim [Kurth] says, `I don't want this,' that makes it very difficult. It is very hard to have worked our best to do what we thought [Kurth] wanted and what was the best result for everybody and then to find out afterward that she turned around to say something else.'