Have Ethan Nordean’s Hopes Been Semi-Colon’ed by Dabney Friedrich’s [Chapter and] Verse?

Back in June, I noted that Ethan Nordean’s lawyers were staking his defense on getting all the crimes charged against him thrown out — from the obstruction charge applied in an unprecedented manner, to the civil disorder tainted by its racist past, all the way to trespassing.

The biggest advantages that Ethan Nordean and the other men charged in the Proud Boys Leadership conspiracy have are a judge, Tim Kelly, who is very sympathetic to the fact that they’re being held in jail as the government fleshes out the case against them, and the 450 other January 6 defendants who have been charged with one or another of the same charges the Proud Boys were charged with. The biggest disadvantages are that, as time passes, the government’s case gets stronger and stronger and the fact that seditious conspiracy or insurrection charges not only remain a real possibility, but are arguably are a better fit than what they got charged with.

That’s why it baffles me that, minutes after Judge Kelly noted that every time Nordean files a new motion, Nordean himself tolls the Speedy Trial clock, Nordean’s lawyer, Nick Smith, filed a motion to dismiss the entirety of the indictment against Nordean.


[T]actically, trying to throw out every single crime, up to and including his trespassing charge, charged against one of the key leaders of a terrorist attack that put our very system of government at risk trades away the two biggest advantages Nordean has on legal challenges that won’t eliminate the prosecution against Nordean.


[I]f any of these challenges brought by others succeed, then at that point, Nordean could point to the appellate decision and get his charges dropped along with hundreds of other people. But launching the challenge now, and in an omnibus motion claiming that poor Ethan didn’t know he was trespassing, is apt to get the whole package treated with less seriousness. Meanwhile, Nordean will be extending his own pre-trial detention. The government will be given more time to try to flip other members of a famously back-stabbing group, possibly up to and including Nordean’s co-conspirators (whose pre-trial detention Nordean will also be extending). And Judge Kelly will be left wondering why Nordean keeps undermining Kelly’s stated intent to limit how much the government can draw this out.

As I noted, on Friday Dabney Friedrich became the first DC District judge to uphold the obstruction application. The decision comes as — predictably — DOJ seems to be closing in on a much more substantive description of the Proud Boy-led plan to assault Congress. All the while, Nordean has been sitting in SeaTac jail, and even got thrown into SHU (solitary) last week for as yet undisclosed reasons.

To be clear: Friedrich’s is in no way the last word. Judges Randolph Moss, Amit Mehta, and the judge presiding over Nordean’s case, Tim Kelly, are all due to rule on the issue as well, with a number of the other judges facing such challenges as well. I’d be surprised if all the judges ruled for DOJ.

And because these judges are likely to rule differently, as all the parallel challenges have been briefed, some of the lawyers in the key cases have kept the judges apprised of what was going on in other challenges. For example, after getting leave first, the government submitted filings they made in Nordean and Guy Reffitt’s challenges to obstruction in the Brady Knowlton docket. Defendants have occasionally used that opportunity to respond.

Yesterday, without first asking for leave to file it, Nordean submitted what was billed as a “notice of new authority” in the case, but which was, in fact, a 23-page point by point rebuttal of and which didn’t actually include Friedrich’s opinion. As part of that, purportedly to take issue with the grammatical claims that Judge Friedrich made but actually in an effort to attack an example Friedrich used rather than the law itself, Nordean lawyers David and Nick Smith use an Emily Dickinson poem to — they claim — make a point about line breaks and semicolons.

And the Court did not explain how a semicolon and line break somehow altered the meaning of (c)(2)’s “otherwise” phrase which, as the Court correctly noted, “links” it to the meaning of (c)(1). As Nordean has previously explained, the question of meaning involves grammar, not page format. Subsection (c)(2) is a clause dependent on (c)(1) for its meaning because the predicate “or otherwise obstructs, influences, or impedes any official proceeding, or attempts to. . . .” is not a complete sentence.


As the Court will see, each of the provisions in the case relied on by the Sandlin Court is a complete sentence, unlike subsections (c)(1) and (c)(2) of § 1512. Thus, they are grammatically independent in a way that (c)(1) and (c)(2) are not. The same grammatical point distinguishes Justice Scalia’s finding in United States v. Aguilar, on which the Sandlin Court relies, that the ejusdem generis canon did not apply to § 1503’s “omnibus clause.” 515 U.S. at 615-16 (finding that the omnibus clause is “independent” of the rest of § 1503 in a grammatical sense: it stands alone as a complete sentence).

Contrary to the Sandlin Court’s understanding, line breaks and semicolons do not necessarily alter the meaning of the clauses that follow in a sentence. One simple example would seem to suffice:

The reticent volcano keeps
His never slumbering plan;
Confided are his projects pink
To no precarious man.

In the sentence above, the line break between “The reticent volcano keeps/His never slumbering plan” does not indicate that the second line’s meaning is “independent” of the first line’s. To the contrary, the phrase containing the pronoun “his” cannot be understood without reference to its antecedent in the first line. Similarly, the same pronoun following the semicolon cannot be understood without reference to the first line. Just so with (c)(2)’s “; or otherwise obstructs . . .” We are concerned with meaning, not the surface of the page.

This is poetry!! It is fairly insane to liken poetry, much of the power of which stems from breaking the rules of grammar and which often strives to obscure meaning, to US Code, which aspires to use grammar in ways that clarify meaning.

There’s one more problem, too.

There’s some dispute, because there is no final manuscript for this poem, about whether Dickinson used a semicolon or a dash after “slumbering plan.” And Dickinson’s dashes — literary experts say with all the certitude that drove me from literary academics — put great stake in the ambiguity introduced by such punctuation.

“The dash is an invitation to the reader to make meaning,” Dr. Smith said. “It can also be a leap of faith.”

Moreover, these were handwritten works, and so dashes would not even be regular lines. The variation in such lines has been interpreted with various meanings as an immediate expression of Dickinson’s intent. [Note: I owe this observation to several people on Twitter but have lost those Tweets; h/t to them]

That is, Dickinson’s poem is not so much an apt comment on Friedrich’s examples. Rather, it’s an example of the uncertainty embodied by the artistic expression of another individual, almost the opposite of laws codified by Congress.

Bizarrely, the citation of Dickinson is among the parts of Smith’s brief that Brady Knowlton’s attorneys lifted and replicated in their own unsolicited notice and reply. Carmen Hernandez, who is Donovan Crowl’s attorney, not only remembered to include Friedrich’s opinion, but she didn’t include the Dickinson poem.

There have been many aspects of my own literary training that I’ve used in my coverage of the January 6 investigation. Reading Emily Dickinson (about which I have no expertise) is not one I’d expect to need.

Update: In a hearing today, Judge Kelly joined Friedrich in rejecting the challenge to the obstruction application.

112 replies
  1. greenbird says:

    i am surrounded by poets, and will take pleasure in forwarding this to some …
    literary academics’ loss is our trophy!

  2. Alan says:

    Tell all the truth but tell it slant,
    Success in circuit lies,
    Too bright for our infirm delight
    The truth’s superb surprise;

    As lightning to the children eased
    With explanation kind,
    The truth must dazzle gradually
    Or every man be blind.

  3. BobCon says:

    “Bizarrely, the citation of Dickinson is among the parts of Smith’s brief that Brady Knowlton’s attorneys lifted and replicated in their own unsolicited notice and reply.”

    Not saying anything here you probably don’t
    already know from the PhD, but Biblical scholars and other analysts of historical texts often wrestle with two texts emerging close in time with this kind of similarity.

    They often consider the probabilities whether author A copied B, or whether there’s a third person C supplying text to both A and B.

    Nobody was telling Dickinson what to do, but is it possible a third party is driving these separate documents?

    • emptywheel says:

      Yes, hoping Peterr weighs in, as his biblical training is always a great addition on these kinds of posts.

      • Rugger9 says:

        Hoping for punaise and Savage Librarian as well, always entertaining. However, if leave to file was not granted, a court in CA doesn’t have to take judicial notice of it. Is that also true here? If so, that would mean that Nordean’s claim gets nowhere.

        • bmaz says:

          Oh, sure. But one thing Marcy raises is that different judges may do different things. It would be nice if they had a unified front in declining this garbage. (I think we had this discussion on twitter).

          • Rugger9 says:

            In a way, that is what worries me since the common linkage is SCOTUS because these are cases around many of the Court of Appeal circuits. As I had noted before in another thread about the pending Archivist release, SCOTUS shouldn’t get involved. However, since these cases present an existential threat to the GQP (the Meadows revelations are merely the latest documentation of GQP peccadillos) I have no doubt that to save their party the SCOTUS conservatives will parachute in to settle the question and soon. Whether it’s five or six remains to be seen, and cert only takes four.

            OT, I see that Gavin (in a flip-flop, but TBF the rule of law is now different) is working on TX-style legislation to go after ghost guns and assault weapons manufacturers. We’ll see what that legislative sausage looks like but props for using the SCOTUS concept appropriately. I’d also wonder if some enterprising yahoo in TX sues the State of California for being a declared sanctuary for women’s rights.

            • bmaz says:

              Really, pretty much all the cases are in DC District, and thus the DC Circuit. People may have been arrested all over, but their cases are all in DC.

              As to Newsome, it is an ironic play. Not sure it is a good idea though. I could shoot it down in 30 seconds. Roe and Casey were the basis for Constitutional rights that were derived from the Constitution, whereas guns are subject to a formal written Amendment, the 2nd. I fear this will end badly for the oh so cute Newsome and California. If they ever get it past the state legislature.

              • Rugger9 says:

                It reads to me more like cheap political pandering which is a Gavin hallmark. I’m hoping he gets primaried.

                • bmaz says:

                  A LOT of people are cheering it, but I am skeptical. And, yes, it does smell of an opportunistic stunt, doesn’t it?

                  • Alan Charbonneau says:

                    When the Texas statute was passed, I posed as a hypothetical that a blue state could use a similar approach to Texas, but targeting (not a pun) guns.

                    Suing someone when you don’t have standing seems like a political stunt both from Abbott and now, Newsom. As you say, it could be shot down in 30 seconds, so I don’t think it is serious, but wants to up the ante with this grandstanding.

      • Peterr says:

        Thanks for the kind words.

        As I mentioned below, this reads like a fundy literalist, who can’t distinguish between the way in which poetry communicates and the manner in which prose does so.

        It also reads like a fifth grader arguing with their teacher, thinking that they have found some great error in the textbook that no one else ever noticed.

        For instance, in the section on the meaning of “Official Proceeding” Nordeen’s lawyer cites all manner of purported authorities to attack the court’s opinion in Sandlin. What the lawyer misses, for all the arguing about language, is the clear meaning of the word as used by Congress on the “About the Congressional Record” page of congress.gov:

        About the Congressional Record

        After each day that Congress is in session, the proceedings are printed in the Congressional Record (CR) and available the following morning.

        New daily issues, reporting business from the previous day if either the House or Senate or both met, are usually available by 10:00 am. Late availability, often due to a late night Congressional session, is announced on the Most Recent Issue page. You can also subscribe to daily email alerts for new CR issues.

        Daily Congressional proceedings may include legislative activity by the chambers and their committees, Member remarks, communications from the president, and more (described below in Congressional Record Sections). Note that official records of House and Senate actions are recorded in their respective journals.

        The preacher will note for the record that the January 6th edition of the Congressional Record includes all the speeches made, rulings from the chair, and notations of adjournments and reconvening relative to the counting of the electoral college results from the various states.

    • earlofhuntingdon says:

      The Q gospel, for example, for which the evidence is literary analysis, not documentary.

      It is amazing, how serendipity persuades preparation to meet opportunity – and too bad for defendants’ counsel here that it does.

      • John Paul Jones says:

        A lot of the evidence for different layers of narrative in Genesis, for example, is also “literary,” in the sense that, as one reads, one can see the same stories being presented from different viewpoints, i.e., told twice, depending on the writer’s/editor’s orientation. My own favourite among the variations is the second account of the creation of Eve, where she is created out of Adam’s rib, the point being, not from his feet (under him), not from his head (over him), but from his rib: his equal in every respect.

        • Peterr says:

          And the still larger point is that the creation of Eve came after God tried to bring companionship to Adam by creating all the different animals.

          (Paraphrase alert . . .)

          “They’re nice,” Adam replies, “but I’m still lonely.” Then God creates the woman out of his rib, and when Adam wakes up, he is delighted. “Finally you got it right! This is not a pet, but a partner!”

        • Peterr says:

          And then there is the poetic recounting of creation in Psalm 104, or the wisdom accounts of creation in Proverbs and the first chapter of John.

          Some of the accounts highlight the power of the Creator, others lift up the love of the Creator for the creation, and still others celebrate the creative imagination of the Creator.

          It does great violence to an author to impute to their work the methods and motives of other authors.

  4. Alan says:

    A Secret told—
    Ceases to be a Secret—then—
    A Secret—kept—
    That—can appal but One—

    Better of it—continual be afraid—
    Than it—
    And Whom you told it to—beside—

  5. Zirc says:

    I don’t get the point they’re making. Dickinson’s poem doesn’t, in this case, violate any grammatical rules. One of the purposes of a semi-colon is to separate two independent clauses, which it does in the poem Nordean’s lawyers cite. The fact that a pronoun in the second independent clause refers to a noun in the first is perfectly normal for prose, and, in this case, poetry. In fact, that’s what pronouns should do. The passage you quote by Nordean’s lawyers makes no sense.


  6. Howard Appel says:

    Yes, but Alito, et al, will be more than happy, being the strict constructionists that they are, to adopt the proposed intent of Ms. Dickenson.

    • Peterr says:

      No. Ms. Dickenson’s intent matters little to Alito et al.

      What truly matters to them is the Mansplaining of Dickenson.

      • emptywheel says:

        I did feel like this was mansplaining which given that it’s Dickinson is particularly notable.

        But at least as part of the discussion I’ve roped Amherst grads and literary scholars into has alerted me that Amherst is finally teaching Dickinson extensively.

  7. earlofhuntingdon says:

    Jim Finch packed his pick-up truck with food, water and a grill, drove to Mayfield, KY, and gave away what he had, because after the worst hurricane in American history, his neighbors had nothin’. He represents what makes America great. Thank you, Mr. Finch.

    Contra Margaret Thatcher, the Republican Party, and the Neoliberal Thought Collective, there is such a thing as society. It’s made from compromise, cooperation, and mutual support. The kind of thing the NTC does relentlessly among its members, but tells everyone else it doesn’t exist. Government exists to do more than to subsidize and immunize wealth. It exists to afflict the comfortable and comfort the afflicted. It is there to do in a planned, consistent, big way what the rest of us cannot do through extemporaneous effort.


    • bmaz says:

      Finch is a hero. Also, keep in mind that Chef Jose Andres and his World Kitchen crews are also on the ground there along the tornados’ track.

      • Peterr says:

        I turned on the Weather Channel this morning, and Jim Cantore was just beginning a live shot from Mayfield. He’s always engaging, but he was on a different level this morning. “As soon as we got here, my cameraman tells me ‘Hey – Jose Andres is here'” At that, Cantore turned Ultimate Fanboy. “We gotta get him. Oh my God. He’s wonderful. The work he does, it’s miraculous. How do you feed all these people when you’ve got no kitchens, no grocery stores, and the people are all dealing with their own stuff? But that’s what he does. Amazing!”

        Cantore teased a later video of his interview, but I didn’t see that.

        • bmaz says:

          How does World Kitchen and Andres do it? They have good and experienced people, and figure out how to get some help from locals, and they are very good at it. I have a friend in New Orleans whose house was temporarily devastated (it’s better now) who went and had a couple of meals from the World Kitchen people because the power was off and no restaurants were open. He left a donation as thanks, but could not say enough about how awesome they were.

          As to Mayfield: My maternal grandparents lived in Murray KY, and my mother was born and raised there. When I was a kid, we went back there 2-3 weeks every summer, once in the winter over Christmas break.

          Murray is a beautiful little town, seriously beautiful. It is about 20 miles from Mayfield, and we went to Mayfield many times to see relatives and eat. Also a bucolic beautiful little town. It has been a long time, but it is still very painful to see. The devastation is beyond comprehension.

          • Leoghann says:

            Seeing the drone footage of Mayfield reminded me of the devastation of the F5 tornado that hit Jarrell, Texas, in 1997. There, numerous houses were completely destroyed, leaving only bare slabs.

  8. Peterr says:

    I see this All. The. Time. from fundies who want to read every word of the Bible in the most literal sense possible. Never mind that the Bible contains a vast array of literary styles and forms, including a whole lot of poetry.

    In the DOJ’s reply, will they respond with the classic story of the panda who goes into a restaurant, in which commas play a pivotal role:

    Eats, shoots, and leaves.

    . . . or . . .

    Eats shoots and leaves.

    • Peterr says:

      Let me also note that in the biblical manuscripts in koine Greek and ancient Hebrew, there was no punctuation. Every comma, semi-colon, exclamation point, period, dash, apostrophe, or quotation mark was inserted by later editors as the manuscripts were translated into other languages — using the punctuation patterns of the target language.

      This often comes as a shock to modern fundies.

      • Charles says:

        I think it is notable that the first two chapters of Genesis and the first two Gospels contain irreconcilable differences, Genesis on the sequence of creation and the Gospels on the physical parentage of Jesus (which is, in any case, irrelevant, since Jesus’ father is clearly the Spirit, not Joseph).

        It is almost as though the writers/editors wanted to tell people, “Read this attentively, but not literally.”

        Fundamentalists want to have it that God breathed scripture, i.e. composed its exact words, whereas a better understanding is that God breathes *through* scripture… as a musician breathes through a clarinet. The instrument–the various translations and squabbles over what is canonical and the obvious later edits– are no more than the polish on the instrument, perhaps affecting the quality of its tone but not affecting its nature.

      • RJames says:

        The workaround for the punctuation in translations of the bible is that they are divinely inspired. When it comes to religion, there’s an explanation for everything.

      • Greg Hunter says:

        The translations also lead to all kinds of interpretive mistakes….I think you use “rib” which is a translation of the word or meaning of curve in Hebrew…..Could it be the curved DNA Helix or a rib? God could have been the first to split the XY and create XX

        I was reared Southern Baptist and for far too long I thought I had once less rib than my female counterparts. This belief is still prevalent in many evangelical settings.

        PS the Forbidden Fruit was not an apple but having sex with the old serpent….Cain is the offspring the ole Serpent and Eve… This interpretation fits more with the curses handed down by GOD for eating the fruit, but Bible believers ignore anything having to do with SEX in the Bible. My contention is the whole story is about having sex with Neanderthals, which also drives Fundies crazy that various DNA from different humanoids inhabit our helix.

        • Rugger9 says:

          Semi-related, when Easter Islanders said their statues “walked” into place, the researchers scoffed at the possibility of growing legs, but what the islanders meant was that their statues were moved one side to the other like tacking into the wind, wobbling into place.

          The Fall of Civilizations podcast is an interesting source.

      • Dopeyo says:

        I had a short conversation with a fundie co-worker years ago. To counter his claims of biblical inerrancy, I pointed out that the Vatican had exclusive possession of the bible for centuries, and I doubted they could resist the temptation to adjust a sentence or two, or paragraphs. Or chapters.
        The bible is a literary wonderment, but i suspect it is mostly lies. John Steinbeck told his students to read the bible, because most stories worth telling were already written there.

    • Hika says:

      The apocryphal critter in Australia is a possum and the phrase used is “eats roots and leaves”. It is a humorous reference to ‘Possum’ being the nickname given to a boyfriend who fears commitment since ‘root’ is an Aussie slang term for congress of a non-political, intensely interpersonal kind.
      “She calls him ‘Possum’ because he eats[,] roots and leaves.”

      • Rugger9 says:

        It’s why “Take Me Out to the Ball Game” had to be changed from “root, root, root” during the Sydney Olympics, perhaps they used “barracking” which means the same thing.

      • new-radical says:

        I’ve read almost every word on this blog for a long time and kept quiet because Rayne doesn’t like me, but…
        The reference is not to a possum which many North Americans would recognise as similar to many placental primates, but to the very odd Wombat.
        Google this strange creature. It burrows and as a consequence, it’s marsupial pouch is oriented the opposite way to; roos, wallabies and koalas. Evolution is such a wonderful thing.
        The joke is that Wombats, just like many Australian men…
        eats, roots, shoots and leaves.
        I hope all at empty wheel enjoy this explanation from the antipodes.

  9. Peterr says:

    Bizarrely, the citation of Dickinson is among the parts of Smith’s brief that Brady Knowlton’s attorneys lifted and replicated in their own unsolicited notice and reply. Carmen Hernandez, who is Donovan Crowl’s attorney, not only remembered to include Friedrich’s opinion, but she didn’t include the Dickinson poem.

    Just reading this post again brings me back to my long-ago seminary days . . .

    Change the names, and this paragraph could be talking about the scholarly debates about the history of the written books of the Pentateuch (JEDP, for you biblical scholars out there), or as EoH notes above, the creation of the written versions of the four gospels in the New Testament. It also reads like the scholars who study the various medieval biblical manuscripts, as they try to tease out the history of a given manuscript by comparing it with others. “Hmmmm . . . The monk who wrote this manuscript included the same misspelling as another copyist at a monastery 300 miles away, but who was copying whom?”

    • Peterr says:

      Having just typed out this comment, I was immediately hit by a question: are these Jan 6 attorneys simply reading what other Jan 6 attorneys filed in other cases, or is there coordination going on among them? It’s certainly no sin to read other filings and borrow from them, nor for one lawyer to talk to other lawyers.

      But if there is strategic coordination between these lawyers, that begins to smell like they are defending not independent, similarly situated individuals, but rather a group of people who are facing charges because of their coordinated activities.

        • Savage Librarian says:

          The specific Dickinson poem that has been referenced may have particular relevance to these insurrectionists or their attorneys. It suggests that they may be familiar with Season 1, Episode 2 of “Dickinson,” which is all about physical and metaphorical volcanoes.


          “Emily and Sue lie in bed and discuss the idea of running away together. Emily discovers a lecturer is due to give a presentation on volcanoes but her father is against women getting a higher education….That night, Emily tells Sue she feels trapped, like the people in Pompeii. Sue then tells her she knows what volcanoes feel like and they proceed to have sex.”

  10. Jimbo says:

    I’ve been following the horrors scrupulously documented on this blog for a while, but never felt compelled to comment. However, these lines from Robert Burns always come to mind:
    We cam na here to view your warks
    In hopes to be mair wise,
    But only, lest we gang to Hell,
    It may be nae surprise.

  11. WilliamOckham says:

    I just want to point out that at the same time those lawyers were demonstrating that they know nothing about grammar or poetry, they were also showing us they don’t understand physics either. Right before the part that our gracious host quotes, there is this line with its footnote:

    The Court did not explain how things can be linked and separate at the same time.5
    5 This would appear to constitute a kind of textual analog to the physics concept of quantum
    entanglement, where particles, though “independent” still affect one another through “interplay”
    at a distance.

    I can’t even…

  12. Eureka says:

    I wrote this at 3+ am, when I saw the et tu Knowlton in a melatonin-laced driveby of Marcy’s twitter.

    I took issue with other ways they were trying to get cute with meanings.

    What a bunch of fucking psycho —
    ninnies, they purloin pretense
    to mothers’ scalding red burn as
    if white pre-ejaculate.

    Read the Room. Of course it was
    Knowlton following Nordean
    — damned meter. Here, have a tissue —
    no one needs to see all that.

      • Eureka says:

        86 forevah, of course! Did you see he had a nice interview w Colin Cowherd last week — where he gave high praise of Kliff K’s play calling (upon which I recalled so many of your screeds to the contrary. lol). CardsSZN

        ^ memo dropped off of 6:38 PM:

        # not revising, let it crust

        in the light of day

          • Eureka says:

            Hey now Ertz is some shiny clickbait and Cowherd’s hose was crimped in any case (Zach doing most of the talking).

            Now for some Jordan Hicks…

            • Eureka says:

              Mmm hmm.


              Poetry Slam Trash Talk Edition

              Few plays before that felt like a pick when Stafford launched it. Conner will get it next time.

              • Eureka says:

                LOL I misstated Conner for the Cards DB on that prior series play. But anyway that works! Who’s on first offense?

      • Bay State Librul says:

        Two semi-colons to go

        “Cocked, locked, and ready to rock. Rough, tough, and hard to bluff.
        I take it slow; I go with the flow. I ride with the tide; I’ve got glide in my stride.”
        George Carlin schtick?

      • Bay State Librul says:

        Two semi-colons to go.

        “Cocked, locked, and ready to rock. Rough. tough, and hard to bluff.”
        “I take it slow; I go with the flow. I ride with the tide. I’ve got glide in my stride.”

        George Carlin schtick?

    • bern says:

      Our defendants now work to require
      That legal proceedings expire
      Not due to reason
      Nor whatever’s the season
      But if colons are semi (or entire)

  13. Solo says:

    In Service of Mr. Service

    Those brave things done
    In the midnight sun
    By those who moil for Truth.
    Where those who dig
    And haul the ore
    And offer up their Youth.

    Yes, sleuthing hounds
    Have made brave sounds
    But bravest we did see.
    Was that night on the lawn
    At Freedom’s Dawn
    All facts laid out for free.

    That one could bare
    To pause and stare
    At back door plots and lies
    Rats scurrying ’round
    Doors pounded down
    Insurrection thick with flies.

    Hear angry voices
    Make their choices
    From fear of any other
    Shade of skin.
    Language lived in.
    All mothers, sisters, brothers.

    Yet, brave things done
    In the midnight sun
    By those who moil for Truth.
    Where those who dig
    And haul the ore
    And offer up their Youth.

    Yes, sleuthing hounds
    Have made brave sounds
    But bravest we did see.
    Was that night on the lawn
    Of Freedom’s Dawn
    All facts laid out for free.

  14. harpie says:

    Eureka, if you’re around:



    9. Isaiah GIDDINGS was born in 1992 and resides in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.
    10. Brian HEALION was born in 1990 and resides in Upper Darby, Pennsylvania.
    11. Freedom VY was born in 1985 and resides in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.
    12. On March 17, 2021, Zachary Rehl, a resident of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, was arrested on charges related to the January 6, 2021, breach of the U.S. Capitol.1 Pursuant to legal process, law enforcement searched the contents of a phone belonging to Zachary Rehl that was obtained at the time of his arrest. […]

    The Defendants were all members of a Telegram message group that was created by Rehl (hereinafter “Rehl Telegram Group”), which contained messages from as early as November 19, 2020, to at least February 2, 2021, including messages related to the events of January 6, 2021, at the U.S. Capitol

        • Eureka says:

          IT WAS NOT A REAL SANTA BUT A DRUNKEN PROVOCATEUR DRESSED LIKE HIM! /so the story goes. See also gnarly receipts on all the other fan bases. But yes, these would be (the offspring of) those dudes.

          Lol I am having … a day. And it’s not over yet. I have it pulled up but still not time to finish reading. Two things quick:

          (1) Area veteran (Marine) Rehl picked up the radios from “the legion” (para. 16), which I take to mean an American Legion Post. Nice.

          (2) Have to see if gov is using “Person 1” here to describe the same “Person 1” as in the PB Leadership indictment. (Leadership docs cite Persons 1, 2, and UCC-1; UCC-1 is publicly IDed by Alan Feuer as Philly PB VP Aaron Whallon Wolkind.)

          Of interest because I suspected Leadership Person 1 could also be a Philly guy per how he phrased some things (as if he had some loyalty/fealty to Rehl):


          ^ this is the post where (IMO — scroll up in thread) EW pointed to Aaron WW as UCC-1 via Aaron Rostom’s Reuter’s reporting, before the ID was firmly stated aloud.

          ..and there are a bunch of (Philly) PBs outstanding. I’d guess because this is split-off that maybe they are different Persons 1 but given past docs can’t be sure.

          • harpie says:

            LOL! I thought that would get a reaction! :-)
            [I don’t really follow any of that at all.]
            …hope you can have a restful night…

              • Eureka says:

                Gosh I saw the clickhole discussion the other night (QT-ing Zoe’s original thread) so am at least refreshed on this topic.

                How timely (doubly intended) for that FOIA response. /life is a comedy, accept it while you brush away the salt of your tears


                OMG and now everyone *tonight* in her replies is relitigating why the clickhole post was taken down.

                *smacks forehead*

            • Eureka says:

              **finishes cleaning salmon, relish, & mayo off of dog’s head, yet is still probably having a better day than that other (likely) vet who programmed Radio(s for) Insurrection**

              LOL, I am forced by my allegiances to follow a bit too much of it.

              ETA: just now seeing your addons. Soothing beaver dam…

              • harpie says:

                …ummm…not even going to ask, though, having some experience, I could guess…can’t say I really miss all that…but, sometimes, I do…hope you got some of the salmon.

                • Eureka says:

                  Yes, I did. And then put the rest up in fridge because I was ~done~ with the whole thing. (Did I tell you about the lingering-in-freezer vegan pizza I tried first, which was great but for the thick slime-mold-like top of the crust that never cooked, while the bottom crust & toppings did? No? Did I mention this uncookable slimy part was very very obtrusive and *thick* to the point of inedible?)

                  To be fair to the dog this wasn’t one of those diabolical doggie episodes where they stick their heads in containers or trip you up with a bunch of stuff in your hands (etc.), but one where you go to spoon something into their bowl and they rudely dash in faster than gravity finishes the slide (ours is a little guy, this happens with them I’ve discovered).

                    • Eureka says:

                      While my sources lie elsewhere, Snopes has my back: ” … the potentially mitigating circumstances under which the incident occurred typically go unmentioned.”

                      Santa 1 was a no-show (drunk).

                      Peltee-Santa 2: scraggly fan, also drunk (depending on whose story you believe. Personally I find it *implausible* that a non-drunk fan would volunteer for halftime Santa duty under any circumstances, much less these).

                      AND he says HE LIKED IT! (<—– more proof DRUNK).


                      Now scribe has told the fuller story in these pages (moar mitigating …), to which you will recall I'd added that absent this debacle of a game, we would never have met the Dancing Itos!

                      The bygone days when anyone would draft an RB #1…

                      This thread, and some more below:


                    • bmaz says:

                      Ha! Will say, once I got older, I just assumed all Santas were drunk. I mean, how could you not be? The movie “Bad Santa” is hilarious.

    • harpie says:

      There’s a PERSON 1, who didn’t go the Insurrection.

      18. At 9:47 a.m. on January 6, 2021, Person 1 sent two voice messages to the Group Text. The first stated, “Hey y’all have a good day. Dress warm. I love y’all. Be safe. Love y’all.”
      The second stated, “And whatever info I come across today I’ll get out to you Zach, get it out to wherever it needs to go. Just let me know where it needs to go.” […]

      • timbo says:

        What does that second person mean? In what context? If that can be tied to info taken from a sacked Congress then…

        • harpie says:

          I’m pretty sure that was the same PERSON 1 sending a second message.

          But, yeah, I think it’s significant because it shows communication to COORDINATE between Insurrection World and Real World.

          [ie: I think someone/somewhere asked today [sorry, can’t remember] how the Insurrectionists knew that the NG were on their way…this is one way they might have known that.]

    • harpie says:

      31. GIDDINGS, HEALION, and VY, as well as Rehl, entered the U.S. Capitol from the west side of the building near the U.S. Senate, and images and video depict them inside the building at various locations.

      EUREKA, these are probably the people REHL was inviting in, that you’ve been emphasizing since…a long time!:

      2:47 PM REHL to others: “You guys wanna go in?” [WEST side]
      2:48 PM REHL to the same “four other contacts”: “They just broke all the doors and windows open, people are pouring in.”

    • harpie says:

      33. According to records obtained from the Darcy Hotel in Washington, D.C., Rehl checked out of the Darcy Hotel on January 7, 2021. At 11:04 a.m. on January 7, 2021, Person 1 texted “Yo yo how u guys doing” to the Group Text, which led to the following messages:
      VY: “Checking out on our way home (11:05am)
      Person 1: “Ok” (11:05pm)
      Person 1: “B safe” (11:05pm)
      Person 1: “All accounted for” (11:05am)
      GIDDINGS: “Yes we have everything and everyone all accounted for all safe a few bruise but we expected that none of our Philly guys had any PB gear the entire event just plain trump supporters from beginning to end thank for the constant check ups and the law enforcement and news updates really really funkin helpful see you when I get back” (11:33am)
      Person 1: “Np bro just doing what can to keep my family safe.”

    • Eureka says:

      The thing where Person 1 is inquiring of the other four’s “blood type” seemed a bit dramatic and immature (according w/their stylized selfies, ‘Oh look I have a joint and OK OK OK !!!’). Whether they were accounting for something like a motor vehicle accident or deep battle trauma, no one’s entering a modern medical facility and getting transfused with anything with antigens in it absent typing/crossmatch. Like volunteering (some)one’s ABO/rhesus+/- statuses (which are usually the only “types” anyone knows about themselves, and kids lately tend to not know even those) isn’t some ticket to (that step of) lifesaving intervention.

      So I wondered another option, were they prepping as if they might have to run some homemade medic unit on the fly?

      That’s a _lot_ of drama.

    • harpie says:

      Capitol Hunters did a thread last night:
      7:47 PM · Dec 14, 2021

      Marcy did one this morning:
      8:00 AM · Dec 15, 2021

      CH, tweet 5/:

      For militia groups who worked in coordination on Jan 6, bulk pickups are likely the norm. On the Proud Boys list, 42 of the 232 clear PBs (18%) are now arrested, with most of groups from FL, MO, PA, & PacNW. Would guess there’ll be block arrests to come for NY, NJ, NC, & VA. 5/

      [Take a look at that PB document CH links to at the end of the thread!]

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