First They Came for Lori Loughlin


C-list actress Lori Loughlin and her husband are said to be “stressed” and “terrified” about the federal government’s actions in their college admissions bribery case.

They were originally charged in federal court with paying half a million dollars to get their two daughters admitted to the University of Southern California on the pretense that they were athletes for the crew team. They were indicted for fraud and conspiracy. They pled not guilty, so they were indicted for money laundering. Now they’re being charged with “attempting to bribe officials at an organization that receives at least $10,000 in federal funding.”

If you think this is a bizarre crime, it is. It’s just another way of making everything punishable by the federal government. And in this case it’s just a reiteration of the original offense, a way of punishing people over and over for the same thing.

It’s about time that people in Hollywood realized that the aggressive state, which almost all of them seem to worship, is perfectly happy to crush people like them, too.

It’s no wonder that an anonymous “source close to Loughlin” asks, “How do you go up against the federal government, when the government has decided to make an example out of you?”

I strongly suspect that Loughlin and her husband are guilty of a ridiculous overvaluation of “higher education.” I once happened to be on the campus of Cal State San Jose when graduation was approaching, and I saw a posse of leftwing students passing out “diplomas” representing degrees in Middle Class Status. They smiled and shook the hands of the “graduates,” in perfect imitation of the way the poohbahs at commencement exercises smile and shake your hand when conferring on you the proof that you, even you, have Gone to College. Point taken. Certificates aren’t education, even though some people are willing to pay half a million bucks for them.

But I also know that Loughlin’s criminal charges are an absurd (though by now, very typical) instance of piling on by the federal government. It’s about time that people in Hollywood realized that the aggressive state, which almost all of them seem to worship, is perfectly happy to crush people like them, too. Will they learn? I doubt it.

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Good for Loughlin for standing up to the charges and demanding her day in court, even if she's guilty of backdoor bribery. (If she had donated that half million to the school directly, everyone in the administration building would be fawning over her daughters right now.) And now the feds want to teach her a lesson by adding to her charges. "Piling on" is a vicious tactic used all-too-often by zealous prosecutors to get a conviction without going to trial. Many of my Sing Sing students are serving time for this very reason. When a poor kid who can't afford a good attorney faces the possibility of 30-to-life, he'll take the plea deal, even when he isn't guilty. And that's a crime.

Michael F.S.W. Morrison

As usual, excellent article by Stephen Cox.
I had wondered, probably like most people, just what the heck the "crime" was and why the federal government was involved.
But here I got an even better answer and an explanation that I needed, and should have known.
Yes, John Adams is dead, but it is not at all far-fetched to worry that such an essay could well be considered a federal crime under a new and future Sedition Act.

Stephen Cox

I'm afraid you're right! But you know the old joke among Christians: "If Christianity were outlawed, would there be enough evidence to convict you?" Now an appropriate version would be: "When advocacy of individual liberty is outlawed, will there be enough evidence to convict you?"

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