Who Hijacked Our Country

Monday, May 21, 2012

$670,000 Fine for Illegal Downloading

No country can possibly survive with a “justice” system this lopsided.  I guess it goes hand in hand with CEOs paying a lower tax rate than janitors.

Joel Tenenbaum, a former Boston University student, was fined $670,000 for the heinous crime of downloading and sharing thirty songs.  Off with his head!  And the Corporate Arm of the Republican Party — formerly known as the Supreme Court — has refused to even review this case.  Who’s this Tenenbaum fellow think he is, anyway — a corporation?

It’s not what you ripped off, it’s WHO you ripped off.  Now if this college punk had stolen billions of dollars from shareholders and bank depositors, he’d be getting a promotion and a larger bonus next year.

Stealing about $45 worth of songs from the all-powerful Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA), on the other hand, is a much more serious crime.

There are too many examples of America’s huge sentencing disparity.  Here are just a few:

Set a fatal booby trap along a popular hiking trail — which by a roll of the dice didn’t ensnare anybody — and you get charged with misdemeanor Reckless Endangerment.

This column by Leonard Pitts, Jr. has some incredible — as in “you can’t make this shit up” — reports of absurd crime sentences.  Thirty years to life for stealing a VCR.  A woman shoots a gun into the air in order to scare off her enraged husband who had been strangling her — twenty years.  (The husband wasn’t charged with a crime.)  Another woman finally shot and killed her husband after he had been beating and kicking her for three days straight — fifty years.  What happened to that “Stand Your Ground” meme that conservatives have been spewing out en masse?

In the case of Joel Tenenbaum’s $670,000 fine, it shouldn’t be surprising that the Supreme Court isn’t interested.  A lowly individual versus the RIAA — in mean, come on.  Not that the Supreme Court has a pro-corporate bias or anything like that.  Just because Clarence Thomas used to work for Monsanto, and Scalia’s son is a Wall Street lawyer fighting on behalf of bank CEOs…

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9 Comments:

Blogger Jerry Critter said...

Wow! And people complain about huge liability and malpractice suits. I'd say that over $22,000 per song is a little steep.

May 21, 2012 at 6:10 PM  
Anonymous Jolly Roger said...

The idiots are driving the final nails in the coffin of the US, and they won't even realize it until the dirt is being thrown on top of them.

May 21, 2012 at 8:16 PM  
Blogger Lisa said...

Guess what Tom I agree with you for the fact that is a ridiculous fine. But if you want to blame parties we can go after the lawyers(the bar Association) who support the democrats, for sucking the life out of the health care system making their money ambulance chasing and who can sue anyone for just about anything.
Yes and they can even sue big corporations for being clumsy and spilling coffee on themselves because boohoo it was too hot.

May 21, 2012 at 9:33 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Noting the woman who didn't think any jury would convict her for defending herself against her husband. Yet it took national protest just to get Florida to prosecute Zimmerman


Erik

May 22, 2012 at 12:18 AM  
Blogger S.W. Anderson said...

You're right, Tom. There is an outrageous double standard. But while the kid who stole 30 tunes being fined that way is dumb, what's happening to others is beyond cruel and stupid, thanks in large part to mandatory minimum sentences.

See Leonard Pitts' column, Some harsh sentences prove unjust, and prepare to be very upset.

This crap has got to stop. There is no excuse for it.

May 22, 2012 at 12:51 AM  
Anonymous Carlos said...

What? Our government give a shit about ordinary, individual citizens? That's crazy talk, Tom. We've got corporitizens to protect, fags to stop from marrying, and churches to protect from oppression.

Shit, I mean...come on. That was probably some really fucking good music. ;-)

May 22, 2012 at 3:03 AM  
Anonymous Jolly Roger said...

Guess what Tom I agree with you for the fact that is a ridiculous fine. But if you want to blame parties we can go after the lawyers(the bar Association) who support the democrats, for sucking the life out of the health care system making their money ambulance chasing and who can sue anyone for just about anything.

Jesuski W. Christ, you are without doubt one of the most uninformed, least articulate, STUPID people ever to draw a breath without mechanical assistance. This has f___ all to do with the healthcare system, which is the way it is because your wet dreams have rigged and gamed insurance to the point where the insured pay twice as much as the uninsured for care, all to pump up a bottom line. They make a killing by killing people. Only someone as appallingly stupid as you are would even try to say that either case has anything to do with any issue except greed, which stupid broads like you wholeheartedly support.

May 22, 2012 at 4:01 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

' Yet it took national protest just to get Florida to prosecute Zimmerman'


That's because 6'3" Martin was pummeling 5'6" Zimmerman in the face MMA style acording to 2 witnessess while banging his head on the cement.
It was just a matter of time before Martin grabbed the gun first. But he was such a good kid I am sure that wouldn't have happend.
His loving father missed him so much that it took him 3 days to report him missing.
I am sure you are just as outraged about this

May 22, 2012 at 7:36 AM  
Blogger Tom Harper said...

Jerry: Yup, if a corporation gets sued for one tenth that amount of money, conservatives are up in arms.

JR: There'll be a case of mass 20-20 hindsight as the dirt is being heaped on.

Erik: You're right, the contrast between those 2 cases is pretty striking.

SW: I have that Leonard Pitts column linked in the post. Some of those sentences are because of mandatory minimum sentences, and some are probably from those retarded 3-strikes laws. A lot of states have a 3-strikes law but California's is the most absurd. A person with 2 nonviolent felonies (forgery, embezzlement, burglary, etc.) is facing life in prison for virtually anything -- shoplifting, you name it.

I would have thought laws like this would violate the Constitution -- separation of powers -- since prison sentences are being handed down by legislators instead of judges. But what do I know.

Carlos: LOL. I do hope those were some fantastic songs he downloaded. At $20,000 per song, my listening standards would be mighty high.

Anonymous: Nice try. The national outrage over the Trayvon Martin killing was because Zimmerman wasn't even arrested after the shooting. It took weeks of national publicity to get the Sanford police dept. to get off their asses and do their jobs. I don't care if George Zimmerman gets a light sentence or gets acquitted or whatever; the important thing is that the legal process is running its course.

And the bottom line is that this fight would have never happened if Zimmerman had stayed in his car as the police told him to do. You can't chase somebody, against police orders, and then yelp "self defense" when the person you're chasing turns on you.

May 22, 2012 at 10:44 AM  

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