Turkish Court Jails Journalist For Telling The Truth About A Politician's Offshore Tax Shelter

from the there-is-no-defense-against-defamation-in-Turkey dept

Truth is no defense against allegations of defamation -- not in Turkey where criminal defamation law is just one of the government's many weapons deployed against critics. Journalist Pelin Ünker has been sentenced to more than a year in jail by a Turkish court for publishing undeniable facts.

An Istanbul court sentenced the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists’ member to imprisonment for 13 months for “defamation and insult.”

Ünker, who reported that former prime minister Binali Yildirim and his sons owned companies in Malta in the Turkish newspaper Cumhuriyet, was also fined $US1615.

Ünker's reports were drawn from the Paradise Papers, which exposed the secret bank accounts of politicians and world leaders -- tax dodging efforts deployed by people whose salaries are paid with tax dollars collected from others. The accusations involving Binali Yildirim were true, and yet, the court somehow found telling the truth about a high-ranking Turkish government figure was defamatory.

Ünker said what made the “world first” ruling so remarkable was that the complainants acknowledged that her articles were true.

“This decision is not a surprise for us. Because the result was certain from the beginning. There is no criminal offense or defamation in my articles,” she said.

“The fact is Binali Yıldırım’s sons have Maltese companies. Binali Yıldırım had already accepted that they have these companies. In the indictment, it is also accepted.

In Turkey, it's illegal to expose shady dealings and wrongdoing if it involves government officials. The courts serve the Turkish government, rather than act as a check against its overreach. This is all headed up by one of the world's thinnest-skinned autocrats, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, who made made a cottage industry of worldwide censorship.

It's a garbage ruling by a garbage court in a country run by a collective of garbage people who wield an unholy amount of power. Ünker plans to appeal the ruling -- not necessarily because it will change things, but because that's what you do when you're faced with a clearly unfair ruling from a wholly-subservient court.

If anything is going to change the situation in Turkey, it's not going to be some magical reawakening of basic respect for human rights from deep inside the government. It's the rest of the world applying pressure by refusing to pretend President Erdogan has anything worthwhile to contribute to the world. American tech companies need to blow off the country's demands for user info and content removal, and governments of other countries need to stop following up on criminal complaints filed by Turkey against foreign citizens. The status quo is being maintained by world inaction and Turkey's citizens paying the price over and over again.

Filed Under: binali yildirim, journalism, offshore tax shelter, paradise papers, pelin unker, truth, turkey, whistleblowing


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  • icon
    Gary (profile), 16 Jan 2019 @ 8:33pm

    Press

    Bad press coverage is "Fake News" as we know from the Cheeto. This is why he loves dictators - because they can jail the press. Or, you know, just kill them like his best pal Putin.

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  • icon
    Bamboo Harvester (profile), 16 Jan 2019 @ 9:23pm

    Contraire

    "In Turkey, it's illegal to expose shady dealings and wrongdoing if it involves government officials."

    "Journalist Pelin Ünker has been sentenced to more than a year in jail by a Turkish court for publishing undeniable facts.(about government officials)"

    "It's a garbage ruling by a garbage court..."

    She knew it was illegal, she did it anyway, and the "garbage ruling by a garbage court" found her guilty of breaking an existing law that she knew full well she was breaking.

    How is that a "garbage ruling"? You may not agree with that law. But if you go to Turkey and *deliberately break it, or ANY of their laws*, you're not a "hero", you're an idiot.

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    • icon
      That One Guy (profile), 16 Jan 2019 @ 11:34pm

      'Make your betters look bad? Off to jail with you.'

      By that argument whistleblowers are also 'idiots', no matter what they expose, so long as a court buys the argument that they violated a law to do so. Likewise historical figures who broke existing laws to highlight just how bad they were(like, oh I dunno, where certain people can sit in a bus?).

      It's an atrocious and laughably corrupt law practically tailor made to prevent the peons from knowing what the nobility are doing by making exposing factual information, and rather relevant information at that, illegal, and by following along and applying it the rubbish court is, as the article notes, acting not as a check against the government but merely a tool of it.

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        identicon
        Anonymous Coward, 17 Jan 2019 @ 12:30am

        Re: 'Make your betters look bad? Off to jail with you.'

        Whistleblowers are idiots. Their lives are ruined by retaliation and most of what they fight doesn't wind up stopped.

        Even a ten year-old knows: DO NOT SNITCH.

        Television and media are great at suckering people into sacrificing their personal well-being for some "cause."

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        • icon
          PaulT (profile), 17 Jan 2019 @ 3:11am

          Re: Re: 'Make your betters look bad? Off to jail with you.'

          You right, far better to participate in immoral activity and be complicit in the coverup. I mean, Mark Felt didn't change anything so why should anyone bother doing the right thing?

          /s

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          • identicon
            Anonymous Coward, 17 Jan 2019 @ 4:05am

            Re: Re: Re: 'Make your betters look bad? Off to jail with you.'

            As a rule, those who break laws and those who remain quiet while witnessing others break laws live peaceful, prosperous lives because they have money and are not targeted by people.

            Those who snitch out people in power wind up targeted, others fear standing with them lest they be targeted, they lose money, friends, and many things others take for granted.

            If you want to live your life in a television fantasy go ahead. The real world runs much differently.

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            • icon
              PaulT (profile), 17 Jan 2019 @ 4:30am

              Re: Re: Re: Re: 'Make your betters look bad? Off to jail with yo

              Oh, I think I see the problem - you seem to think that whistleblowers are people who didn't think there would be consequences. You're wrong.

              In the real world, most whistleblowers are people who know and understand the consequences, but accept them because they believe that doing the right thing is more important. Many of the freedoms you currently enjoy are a direct result of people like this.

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                identicon
                Anonymous Coward, 17 Jan 2019 @ 5:22am

                Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: 'Make your betters look bad? Off to jail wit

                The "real world" of network television definitely is full of people like that. Ask Monica Lewinsky if this applies to her.

                Don't bother asking the ones who have suffered far worse. Very easy to sit in an ivory tower cheering on others who take risks so we can feel good about people.

                Crime pays.

                Don't snitch.

                Many people are duped by tales like yorus and don't realize you can't undo being a snitch and once you are identified as one your life as you know it is effectively over.

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                • icon
                  PaulT (profile), 17 Jan 2019 @ 6:01am

                  Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: 'Make your betters look bad? Off to jail

                  "Ask Monica Lewinsky if this applies to her."

                  So, because you can think of an example of someone who went in over their head, that negates the actions of the people who knowingly risked or sacrificed?

                  "Very easy to sit in an ivory tower cheering on others who take risks so we can feel good about people."

                  Yes, you do seem to rather enjoy trashing the people who brought you the rights which you are using to attack them.

                  "Many people are duped by tales like yorus"

                  Tales of what has happened in real life? I'm sorry if the truth offends you.

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                • icon
                  btr1701 (profile), 17 Jan 2019 @ 10:35am

                  Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: 'Make your betters look bad? Off to jail

                  > Ask Monica Lewinsky if this applies to her.

                  Monica Lewinsky wasn't a whistleblower, genius.

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                • identicon
                  Anonymous Coward, 17 Jan 2019 @ 1:01pm

                  Re: U mad bro?

                  Sup Jhonny boy. Some bitch snitch on your racket?

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            • icon
              Stephen T. Stone (profile), 17 Jan 2019 @ 5:02am

              The real world runs much differently.

              …because cynical assholes like you decided long ago to stop giving a fuck about doing what is right (or the people who are doing what is right) and start kissing the asses of your “betters”. Yeah, the world is shit—I get that. So what do you plan to do about it: nothing or something?

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              • identicon
                Anonymous Coward, 17 Jan 2019 @ 5:25am

                Re:

                Self-preservation is a rquriement in a world that does not protect those who break laws or blow whistles.

                There is no point in fighting evil if good will stand down while you do it. Look at #metoo and what happened tow omen who spoke up.

                Ever hear about the nuclear whistleblower who was beaten within an inch of his life for exposing a radiation risk to a small town? Doubtful you'd even care.

                One CEO losing his job does not offset one worker losing his life or livelihood.

                Like I said, even ten year-olds know: DO NOT SNITCH.

                Talk is cheap, and yours only proves why what I say is correct: CRIME PAYS.

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                • icon
                  That One Guy (profile), 17 Jan 2019 @ 5:33am

                  Re: Re:

                  Talk is cheap, and yours only proves why what I say is correct: CRIME PAYS.

                  ... because the criminals know that there's plenty of self-serving cowards such as yourself who will look the other way lest they be next, and as such ensure that said criminals will continue to benefit from their actions because no one dares call them on it.

                  Thankfully there's still more than a few people out there with the courage to stand up for what they believe is right, even if it costs them, and even if they know ahead of time that all they're providing is a chance for things to change for the better, rather than ensuring it.

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                    icon
                    Bamboo Harvester (profile), 17 Jan 2019 @ 7:01am

                    Re: Re: Re:

                    "... because the criminals know..."

                    Criminals? You mean people who break laws, usually deliberately?

                    You seem to have a sliding scale on "crime", in that it only applies to laws YOU like.

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                    • icon
                      Stephen T. Stone (profile), 17 Jan 2019 @ 7:29am

                      Re: Re: Re: Re:

                      “If the injustice is part of the necessary friction of the machine of government, let it go, let it go; perchance it will wear smooth,—certainly the machine will wear out. If the injustice has a spring, or a pulley, or a rope, or a crank, exclusively for itself, then perhaps you may consider whether the remedy will not be worse than the evil; but if it is of such a nature that it requires you to be the agent of injustice to another, then, I say, break the law. Let your life be a counter friction to stop the machine. What I have to do is to see, at any rate, that I do not lend myself to the wrong which I condemn.”
                      — Henry David Thoreau, Resistance to Civil Government (Civil Disobedience)

                      A person who breaks the law can be called a “criminal” regardless of their purpose for their breaking the law. On this point, I agree in principle. But if you would label those who break the law for the purpose of civil disobedience of an unjust law as “criminal”, you may want to reëxamine your prejudices and biases. You could one day be in the position to perform a similar act of “criminality”—and I doubt that, in such a situation, you would appreciate having the label of “criminal” applied to you.

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                        icon
                        Bamboo Harvester (profile), 17 Jan 2019 @ 7:50am

                        Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                        If you live in the US, you ARE a criminal. Probably unknowingly, and will never be prosecuted for the dozen or so laws you break daily. Simply because of the preponderance of laws in the US. I'd suspect that most countries are the same.

                        I'd have no problem being labeled a criminal if I was arrested, tried, and convicted of *deliberately* breaking a law. The shoe fits.

                        I *would* take exception to *anyone* calling the Court that convicted me "garbage" because they followed the Law. That's their job.

                        A court's job is NOT to Legislate.

                        As to "civil disobedience", I can't think of a single example offhand in the last half century where the penalty for the violations was a Prison (NOT Jail) term.

                        Someone, as always, brought up Parks. Even forgetting all the machinations behind that stunt, she wasn't facing prison time for her actions.

                        And as bad as US prisons are, they can't hold a candle to the conditions and brutality of the Turkish prisons. She probably won't survive the year.

                        Remember, she didn't "discover" either the law she broke or that members of the Turkish government were "hiding" money under it. She just deliberately broke the law against "advertising" it. Knowingly. From inside Turkish jurisdiction.

                        She's an idiot. Strike that, she's up there in the realm of the Special Idiots.

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                        • icon
                          Igualmente69 (profile), 17 Jan 2019 @ 8:04am

                          Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                          "A court's job is NOT to Legislate."
                          The problem is that you say that as if it is a universal principle, and it isn't.

                          You should probably research the history of English common law, which has been inherited, with modifications and exceptions, by the U.S. The main defining feature of the common law is that, in fact, judges DO make law. You might not like it, you might be a conservative that doesn't like "judicial activism", but your belief is irrelevant to the factual matter.

                          You could have said that the Turkish legal system doesn't follow that principle, and then there could be a reasoned response about how they think that it should, but that would be a separate issue, and you didn't say that.

                          If you aren't already a fan of Robert Bork, you should look him up, you would like him.

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                        • icon
                          Stephen T. Stone (profile), 17 Jan 2019 @ 8:11am

                          I would take exception to anyone calling the Court that convicted me "garbage" because they followed the Law. That's their job.

                          The job of a criminal court is to seek justice. In any court worth a goddamn, justice must be realized regardless of the consequences. (Fīat jūstitia ruat cælum — "Let justice be done though the heavens fall.") A court that acts as an extension of a dictator, as a retaliatory agent of the government, in service of a law that makes a crime out of embarassing that dictator…yes, that court is garbage, and yes, it should be described as such. Such a court does not care about justice; it cares only about appeasing an asshole who thinks his power is immutable and his rule is eternal.

                          If you will not stand up and declare this ruling an affront to the concept of justice, you need to sit down and shut up while the grown folks are talking.

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                            icon
                            Bamboo Harvester (profile), 17 Jan 2019 @ 11:06am

                            Re:

                            TIP: If you're ever up on criminal charges, don't represent yourself.

                            "If you will not stand up and declare this ruling an affront to the concept of justice, you need to sit down and shut up while the grown folks are talking."

                            They ruled on THE LAW. Their ruling was correct - she violated it, willfully at that.

                            Personally, I don't agree with that particular law either.

                            However, I'm not a Turkish citizen, so my opinion on their laws, government, and legal system has no impact.

                            I'm also not bloody stupid enough to deliberately throw myself into the bear pit of another country's system with a pork chop around my neck.

                            And I have no sympathy or "compassion" for those who ARE stupid enough to do so.

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                            • icon
                              Stephen T. Stone (profile), 17 Jan 2019 @ 1:32pm

                              “Stupid”, “dumb”, “idiot”…you toss those words around in judgment of this woman and those who think (as she may have) that standing up to power regardless of the consequences is a noble act. If you ever end up in a position in which you feel so strongly about a closely-held belief or personal conviction that you would stand up to power and break the law despite the possible consequences, may we all have permission to call you names and demean you as a human being because of your choice?

                              You may disagree with the law, but you still continue to demean the woman who broke that law. You do not need to tell us about your lack of compassion—you have demonstrated it well enough to make it self-evident.

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                        • icon
                          PaulT (profile), 17 Jan 2019 @ 8:13am

                          Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                          "That's their job"

                          Guess what the journalist's job is? Hint: it didn't magically change because some corrupt fascists decided they didn't want their crimes talked about.

                          "She's an idiot. Strike that, she's up there in the realm of the Special Idiots."

                          Why? Your entire argument seems to be based on the idea that she didn't know the risk or the penalty. That is not supported by the linked article.

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                          • icon
                            Bamboo Harvester (profile), 17 Jan 2019 @ 11:12am

                            Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                            I'd have to do deep research into Turkish Law to find out definitively, but I suspect (mainly due to the existence of the "don't say anything" law) that there are similar Turkish Laws *allowing* the money hiding and such BY Turkish Government Officials - it just stands to reason.

                            If so, they're not "corrupt". And while the government is obviously dictatorial, I don't think they come under the actual definition of "Fascist".

                            In the US, Bribery is illegal. You can be convicted for offering, paying, or accepting a bribe. Any of the three is corruption.

                            But if Bribery were made legal, those indulging in it in any manner would no longer be "corrupt".

                            As to why she's a Special Idiot, she committed her crime, yes, crime, inside of Turkish jurisdiction. If she'd moved to France, Botswana, or Elbonia and published, she'd have been shielded.

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                            • icon
                              PaulT (profile), 17 Jan 2019 @ 12:29pm

                              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                              You seem to believe that a court can’t be corrupt just because the law has been gamed to say they can be, and that civil disobedience only counts if you think the punishment is serious enough. Neither is true.

                              As for your last comment - maybe she is willing to take the hit to shine a light on the abuses in her own country? We literally wouldn’t be talking about this if she wasn’t facing jail time.

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                    • icon
                      btr1701 (profile), 17 Jan 2019 @ 10:40am

                      Re: Re: Re: Re:

                      > Criminals? You mean people who break laws, usually
                      > deliberately?

                      Rosa Parks was a criminal. She's also considered by everyone who isn't a psychopath to be a hero for her criminality because in many cases, the law itself is both immoral and criminal (in the philosophical sense), having been imposed by the corrupt from above on people whom it victimizes and who had no say in its passage.

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                • icon
                  PaulT (profile), 17 Jan 2019 @ 6:02am

                  Re: Re:

                  "Talk is cheap, and yours only proves why what I say is correct: CRIME PAYS."

                  Mainly because pricks like you would rather lick the boots of your oppressors than make any personal sacrifices for the greater good.

                  You should be thankful that history has been lived by men with a spine.

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                • icon
                  Stephen T. Stone (profile), 17 Jan 2019 @ 7:32am

                  Re: Re:

                  There is no point in fighting evil if good will stand down while you do it.

                  You may think you are better than all the fools who fight on, but there you stand: the good man doing nothing. And while evil triumphs, the only victory afforded to you is that you stuck true to your guns.

                  You are a coward, to your last whimper.

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                  • identicon
                    Anonymous Coward, 17 Jan 2019 @ 8:36am

                    Re: Re: Re:

                    The man that looks the other way is as bad as the man who committed the crime. Both should share in the recompense.

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                • identicon
                  Anonymous Coward, 17 Jan 2019 @ 8:06am

                  Re: Re:

                  But if you go to Turkey and deliberately break it, or ANY of their laws, you're not a "hero", you're an idiot.

                  only proves why what I say is correct: CRIME PAYS.

                  ...so on the one hand, breaking laws pays... on the other hand breaking the law is stupid, and only stupid people do it.

                  No, what you're actually saying here is that "crime" is irrelevant. That everyone should outright ignore what what may or may not be legal, and focus only on how to best to make themselves useful to anyone with more power than them. Which is fine, but don't pretend to wrap this up into some statement about laws or crimes or the workings of the court system. Your worldview does not consider these things at all, it only considers power. Crime pays...sometimes. Crime is stupid and ruins your life...sometimes. Power is the only thing which matters to you.

                  Anyway, the court is garbage either way you look at it. After all, Turkey also has laws against tax evasion... If the court is not garbage because it followed the law, then the court is garbage for not following the law.

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            • icon
              stderric (profile), 17 Jan 2019 @ 9:00am

              Re: Re: Re: Re: 'Make your betters look bad? Off to jail with you.'

              As a rule, those who break laws and those who remain quiet while witnessing others break laws live peaceful, prosperous lives because they have money and are not targeted by people.

              Another rule is that there exist people who are too self-aware to enjoy "peace and prosperity" while living lives of pants-shitting cowardice and slavery.

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            • icon
              btr1701 (profile), 17 Jan 2019 @ 10:34am

              Re: Re: Re: Re: 'Make your betters look bad? Off to jail with yo

              > Those who snitch out people in power wind up targeted,
              > others fear standing with them lest they be targeted,
              > they lose money, friends, and many things others take for
              > granted.

              And then become a historically recognized heroes whose actions resulted in those powerful people getting a boot in their ass. Like Rosa Parks. Like Washington, Jefferson, and the gang. Like MLK.

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              • identicon
                Anonymous Coward, 17 Jan 2019 @ 2:03pm

                Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: 'Make your betters look bad? Off to jail wit

                Exactly: they become the rug on which future people feel good walking.

                Veronica Guerin is a good example of that. Only erason she was lionized in death is she was hung out to dry in life.

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              • identicon
                Anonymous Coward, 17 Jan 2019 @ 2:04pm

                Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: 'Make your betters look bad? Off to jail wit

                Great! You go fight all the evil you want.

                Smart people know better.

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      • icon
        Bamboo Harvester (profile), 17 Jan 2019 @ 7:16am

        Re: 'Make your betters look bad? Off to jail with you.'

        So are you agreeing that it's not a "garbage ruling" by a "garbage court"?

        The court ruled on the law. Correctly.

        She had no defense - she knew the law and broke it anyway.

        How does that make the court that CONFIRMED HER ACTIONS "garbage"?

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        • identicon
          Anonymous Coward, 17 Jan 2019 @ 7:55am

          Re: Re: 'Make your betters look bad? Off to jail with you.'

          I have a couple of questions for you: what is the ideal purpose of a court of law, regardless of what country it is in? Put a different way, what is it that a court of law should be designed to accomplish?

          Additionally, when presented with a law that is itself garbage, what is it that a court of law should do?

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          • identicon
            Anonymous Coward, 17 Jan 2019 @ 8:39am

            Re: Re: Re: 'Make your betters look bad? Off to jail with you.'

            when presented with a law that is itself garbage, what is it that a court of law should do?

            They should do as they have always done: Rule on the current case according to the current law. It is not their job to strike down a law. That's an entirely separate process.

            This can make for rulings that everyone generally considers "bad", perhaps even the judge agrees. But it is not the place of the court to pick and choose which laws to apply. They may interpret the law thereby setting new precedent but they cannot and should not decide to ignore the law out of a dislike for the law.

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            • identicon
              Anonymous Coward, 17 Jan 2019 @ 8:47am

              Re: Re: Re: Re: 'Make your betters look bad? Off to jail with yo

              If you're going to answer one question, please answer the other.

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              • identicon
                Anonymous Coward, 17 Jan 2019 @ 9:12am

                Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: 'Make your betters look bad? Off to jail wit

                I did.

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                • identicon
                  Anonymous Coward, 17 Jan 2019 @ 9:36am

                  Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: 'Make your betters look bad? Off to jail

                  Please clarify, then, because I'm not comprehending your answer to:

                  "What is the ideal purpose of a court of law, regardless of what country it is in?"

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                  • identicon
                    Anonymous Coward, 17 Jan 2019 @ 11:02am

                    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: 'Make your betters look bad? Off to

                    They should do as they have always done: Rule on the current case according to the current law.

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                    • identicon
                      Anonymous Coward, 17 Jan 2019 @ 11:50am

                      Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: 'Make your betters look bad? Off

                      That is a procedure. I am asking about purpose. Ideally speaking, why should a court of law exist? For what purpose are they put in place?

                      I'm not asking about Turkey, or America, or any country.

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          • icon
            Bamboo Harvester (profile), 17 Jan 2019 @ 11:21am

            Re: Re: Re: 'Make your betters look bad? Off to jail with you.'

            The Courts determine if the accused has broken a law, if there were any circumstances in the breaking of the law that would reduce or remove the penalties incurred by the breaking of that law, and if convicted, apply the legally mandated sentence for breaking that law.

            There is nothing in US Law that allows a Judge to legislate from the bench. The main purpose of the Judge in a Criminal trial is to make sure that the Law is followed by both sides in the US adversarial system.

            The Jury is tasked with ruling on the case in question. While Jury Nullification, the act of a jury refusing to return a Guilty verdict because they disagree with the Law being prosecuted happens, but rarely.

            In this particular case, she knowingly broke a law, was tried for it, and the court ruled that she was guilty of breaking said law.

            How is that a "garbage ruling from a garbage court"?

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            • icon
              Stephen T. Stone (profile), 17 Jan 2019 @ 1:18pm

              How is that a "garbage ruling from a garbage court"?

              Because the only reason she was even standing trial for publishing the actual goddamn truth was because a dictator/wealthy allies of said dictator decided punishing someone for publishing a truth that embarassed people in power was something to be made illegal and the court went along with that bullshit out of fear of, or complicity with, those powerful men. If a court in the U.S. were to convict someone for doing what she did because our current POTUS and his cronies (both in and out of government) decided that embarassment of the powerful was a prosecutable criminal act, we would rightfully call that conviction the act of a tyrant. The law in Turkey is bullshit, the court that allowed a conviction under that law is garbage, and the people who had that woman tossed in jail for telling the truth are assholes. It would take a better argument than “but it’s the law there” for me to change my mind on the matter—and you have proven that you cannot provide such an argument.

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          • identicon
            Anonymous Coward, 26 Jan 2019 @ 3:08pm

            Re: Re: Re: 'Make your betters look bad? Off to jail with you.'

            To see if it walks like a duck and then fine you for copyright infringement?


            Did I win an Aereo?

            reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

        • icon
          That One Guy (profile), 17 Jan 2019 @ 7:48pm

          Re: Re: 'Make your betters look bad? Off to jail with you.'

          So are you agreeing that it's not a "garbage ruling" by a "garbage court"?

          No, both of those still apply. The law is garbage, the court for mindlessly applying it are garbage, and the ruling that resulted from it is garbage.

          That it may be entirely legal in Turkey is besides the point, and changes none of the above. Legality does not automatically equal 'just' or 'right', and you don't need to look very far through history for that to be made crystal clear.

          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • icon
      PaulT (profile), 17 Jan 2019 @ 3:09am

      Re: Contraire

      So, you're opposed to civil disobedience?

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • icon
        Bamboo Harvester (profile), 17 Jan 2019 @ 7:11am

        Re: Re: Contraire

        "So, you're opposed to civil disobedience?"

        The simplest reply to that would be "So, you're opposed to laws?", but I'd like to hear how ONE person deliberately breaking ONE law, is an example of civil disobedience.

        If a law is passed in your jurisdiction making walking into a police station with your hat on backwards punishable by the same fine as Jaywalking (usually $25-50) and you deliberately break it, I have no sympathy for you having to pay the fine.

        You knew the penalty.

        If you happen to have a huge police station and 200 people do it at the same time as a "civil disobedience" protest, I'd chuckle at it, mainly because they just gifted the jurisdiction $5-10,000.

        Now, if the penalty was a year of being brutalized in a Turkish prison, I'd be amazed that so many Special Idiots managed to figure out which way to wear the hats at the same time.

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

        • icon
          PaulT (profile), 17 Jan 2019 @ 7:30am

          Re: Re: Re: Contraire

          "I'd like to hear how ONE person deliberately breaking ONE law, is an example of civil disobedience."

          https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rosa_Parks

          "You knew the penalty."

          Some people break laws deliberately in order to call attention to them, with the full knowledge of the penalties. They may put knowingly put the overall public good over and above their own personal wellbeing. There are many examples throughout history.

          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

          • icon
            Bamboo Harvester (profile), 17 Jan 2019 @ 7:53am

            Re: Re: Re: Re: Contraire

            Parks was sentenced to a year of being brutalized, raped, and probably killed in a Turkish prison?

            You're comparing Jaywalking with First Degree Murder.

            reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

            • icon
              PaulT (profile), 17 Jan 2019 @ 8:08am

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Contraire

              "Parks was sentenced to a year of being brutalized, raped, and probably killed in a Turkish prison?"

              You asked for an act of civil disobedience and I provided one. There are thousands of others. If your prison rape fantasy is necessary for the term to apply in your head, that's your problem.

              reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

            • icon
              Stephen T. Stone (profile), 17 Jan 2019 @ 8:21am

              Parks was sentenced to a year of being brutalized, raped, and probably killed in a Turkish prison?

              Trotting out the “not as bad as” version of the moral equivalence fallacy is one of the worst counterarguments you could have made. Rosa Parks performed an act of civil disobedience and suffered the consequences for it; that she was not “brutalized, raped, and … killed” does not make her act of civil disobedience any less of one.

              reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

              • icon
                Bamboo Harvester (profile), 17 Jan 2019 @ 11:26am

                Re:

                Rosa Parks faced what, a fine and possibly a couple of days in the local jail.

                If she'd faced a year in prison, you'd have a comparison.

                reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

                • icon
                  PaulT (profile), 17 Jan 2019 @ 12:33pm

                  Re: Re:

                  So, you only recognise civil disobedience if you think the risk is high enough. Which civil rights activist who faced greater punishment would you prefer as the example? There are many to choose from

                  reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

                  • icon
                    Stephen T. Stone (profile), 17 Jan 2019 @ 1:09pm

                    Re: Re: Re:

                    I mean, if you wanna go right to the top, there’s Reverend King himself. He practiced and preached civil disobedience. He called for non-violent solutions to the problems of Black Americans. And he was eventually shot in the fucking face for it.

                    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

                • identicon
                  Anonymous Coward, 17 Jan 2019 @ 1:06pm

                  Re: Re:

                  Next time try digging up.

                  reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

        • icon
          Igualmente69 (profile), 17 Jan 2019 @ 7:55am

          Re: Re: Re: Contraire

          '"So, you're opposed to civil disobedience?"

          The simplest reply to that would be "So, you're opposed to laws?"'

          It wouldn't actually. That reply would make no sense at all, and your use of it shows you lack basic reasoning skills. According to your logic, slaves should just do their work without pay, with no fuss, because that was/is the law in their jurisdiction? If you are gay and it is illegal to be gay, you better just stop being gay or go to jail. If this is truly what you think, you are a scumbag, no ifs, ands, or buts about it.

          Tyranny is tyranny, no matter how many people support it, or what country it is in. It is hard to even comprehend the moral and ethical bankruptcy of your position.

          Civil disobedience is not opposition to laws, it is opposition to unjust laws. No, people do not have to bow down to their overlords and do everything they are told. Yes, they can judge for themselves whether their problem with a law goes beyond mere disagreements in desired policy, and is in fact opposition to injustice.

          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

        • identicon
          concerned citizen, 17 Jan 2019 @ 1:59pm

          Re: Re: Re: Contraire

          hypothetical bamboo guy: there's a law on the books making it illegal to be a jewish individual, punishable by death. Fuck that guy for being born jewish, he broke the damn law, and deserves to die. AM I DOIN' IT RIGHT?

          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • icon
      afn29129 David (profile), 17 Jan 2019 @ 10:56am

      Re: Contraire

      You might want to aquaint yourself with the Underground Railroad.. Back in the day when slavery was legal, aiding a slave to flee was a crime, there was such a thing called the Underground Railroad. Anyone who aided a fleeing slave was a criminal, yet what they did was probably the most noble and humane thing a person could do. Your sort of 'criminals' I'm sure. What it more -- they knew damn well beforehand that what they were doing was considered a crime but did it anyway.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • icon
        Bamboo Harvester (profile), 17 Jan 2019 @ 11:31am

        Re: Re: Contraire

        The whites participating in the Underground Railroad didn't proclaim it to the courts while doing so.

        If they HAD, they'd be in the Special Kind of Idiot group themselves.

        They aided fleeing blacks IN SECRET, protecting themselves from legal retribution.

        Which this journalist could have one-upped simply by leaving Turkey before publishing.

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

        • icon
          Stephen T. Stone (profile), 17 Jan 2019 @ 1:07pm

          Re: Re: Re: Contraire

          simply by leaving Turkey

          Yes, because everyone has the option of upending their entire life and leaving their home town/state/country before doing something their home town/state/country considers “illegal”~.

          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

        • icon
          afn29129 David (profile), 17 Jan 2019 @ 3:40pm

          Re: Re: Re: Contraire

          Sometimes it takes a martyr to get things done... We all already know which side of that equation you are one.

          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

        • icon
          afn29129 David (profile), 17 Jan 2019 @ 3:51pm

          Re: Re: Re: Contraire

          Two quite overt(not secret) events that thumbed their noses to exiting authority /law come to mind.

          1. Martin Luther vs the quite powerful, at the time, Catholic Church and it;s Pope.

          2. The 1776 American Revolution. They really - overtly - told the English King where to stick it, even drew him a map, and broke quite a few English laws in the process.

          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • identicon
        Anonymous Coward, 17 Jan 2019 @ 2:00pm

        Re: Re: Contraire

        All propaganda designed to send others to fight for the common good. People who risked their lives for that cause and were caught wound up dead, btw.

        Much of the time, a whistleblower isn't even believed by those in power, and when they are, they are still a threat.

        Our country is rotton to the core and not worth that type of individual battle anyway.

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

        • icon
          Stephen T. Stone (profile), 17 Jan 2019 @ 2:06pm

          Re: Re: Re: Contraire

          Our country is rotton to the core and not worth that type of individual battle anyway.

          Yeah, why bother even trying to make the world a better place~? Let’s just sit back, get stoned, and bingewatch Stranger Things~!

          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

        • icon
          Hugo S Cunningham (profile), 23 Jan 2019 @ 3:03pm

          Re: Re: Re: Contraire

          You are talking like a paid sock-puppet of the Erdogan regime. (I have not seen such cynical posts on this site when other dictators have been denounced.) Does that mean you are calling Turkey "rotten to the core"?

          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • icon
      Wendy Cockcroft (profile), 18 Jan 2019 @ 5:50am

      Re: Contraire

      Whoa, Bamboo: authoritarian, much? Okay, why is tyranny so awesome and stuff?

      You're all over the Second Amendment on the grounds that if the government ever gets too tyrannical you'll... do what, exactly?

      So... rebellion for me but not for thee? Stop it.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Lawrence D’Oliveiro, 16 Jan 2019 @ 9:41pm

    If You Don’t Know How To Type “Yıldırım” or “Erdoğan

    ... why not just copy and paste from the text which you quoted, where they are spelled correctly?

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • icon
      Vidiot (profile), 17 Jan 2019 @ 4:16am

      Re: If You Don’t Know How To Type “Yıldırım” or “Erdo

      这不是正确的用法

      The stylebooks recognize that using non-Latin alphabets and diacritical marks adds nothing to comprehension.

      That sort of insistence upon "the right way" of using incomprehensible characters is, as the old joke goes, like wetting your pants while wearing a dark suit... it makes the wearer feel warm all over, but nobody else actually notices.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • identicon
        Lawrence D’Oliveiro, 17 Jan 2019 @ 1:52pm

        Re: diacritical marks

        Turkish has both “i” and “ı”, and “g” and “ğ”, which represent different sounds. That makes them different letters. Using correct spelling is generally regarded as a common courtesy.

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

        • identicon
          Anonymous Coward, 17 Jan 2019 @ 2:34pm

          Re: Re: diacritical marks

          And being a spelling pedant on an informal forum is universally considered rude. Much less doubling down on said behaviour.

          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

          • identicon
            Lawrence D’Oliveiro, 17 Jan 2019 @ 3:59pm

            Re: diacritical marks

            Since you are hiding behind cowardly anonymity, I’ll just spell that as “And being a spelling expert on an informal forum is universally considered polite”. Because the different letters and sounds don’t matter, do they?

            reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

            • identicon
              Anonymous Coward, 17 Jan 2019 @ 4:28pm

              Re: Re:

              Hey bro you wanna tripe down on bein’ a clown that’s your business. Not sure what the dig about being an AC is though. And since we are taking names into consideration, you want to consider changing your name to Captain Pedant Of The Knotted Panties. Ya know since words and sounds don’t really mean anything.

              reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

        • icon
          PaulT (profile), 18 Jan 2019 @ 12:22am

          Re: Re: diacritical marks

          Using the standard Latin alphabet is also common courtesy for readers, unless you're saying they should be writing stories about Putin only referring to him using Cyrillic. Transcribing names to the standard alphabet used by readers is common practice.

          I understand your point to a degree, but it's a trivial one.

          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

          • identicon
            Lawrence D’Oliveiro, 18 Jan 2019 @ 8:46pm

            Re: standard Latin alphabet

            Which “standard” would that be? The one used by Latin languages, perhaps? Or not?

            Even in English, consider the difference between “resume” and “resumé”. What would “common courtesy” dictate about distinguishing between them versus not doing so?

            reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

            • icon
              PaulT (profile), 18 Jan 2019 @ 9:53pm

              Re: Re: standard Latin alphabet

              "Which “standard” would that be? The one used by Latin languages, perhaps? Or not?"

              The 26 standard classical letters of the Latin alphabet. These can be augmented with accents, umlauts, etc. but languages differ in this regard and so the standards are the only constant. In Spanish n and ñ are different letters, but when transcribing to English it's not uncommon for just n to be used in place of both, as the target audience would not make the distinction.

              "Even in English, consider the difference between “resume” and “resumé”. What would “common courtesy” dictate about distinguishing between them versus not doing so?"

              The accent in the latter is optional and the distinction between them given by context when written.

              reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

        • icon
          Hugo S Cunningham (profile), 23 Jan 2019 @ 3:17pm

          Re: Re: diacritical marks

          If you know enough about Turkey to care how these words are pronounced, you know how they are pronounced anyways regardless of how they are written in a foreign-language (English in this case) forum.

          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Pixelation, 16 Jan 2019 @ 10:38pm

    Trump is jealous.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 17 Jan 2019 @ 5:25am

    anything that can be done by whichever government, wherever, that takes away the ability for what dastardly deeds the rich, the famous and the powerful are up to and for them to be exposed, is being done. these 'elite' cannot bear the thought of us plebs, us ordinary people from knowing things about these fuckers but they have to know everything about everyone of us! look at how, as was predicted, the EU law, 'The right to be forgotten' has been consistently abused and not by ordinary people! look at the times the 'elite' have gone to court because they tried to hide some stupid conduct they carried out, only to find they make the spread of their stupidity further. they never learn but refuse to stop trying to prevent us knowing what they do. typical bullies!

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 17 Jan 2019 @ 6:19am

    The stark difference between judeo christian law and ethics, and Islamic law and ethics.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    TRX, 17 Jan 2019 @ 9:31am

    > Truth is no defense against allegations of defamation

    In the USA, truth is an absolute defense to a defamation charge; if it's provably true, you can say whatever you want.

    US law forked from British Common Law in 1776; one of the differences that have developed between US and British law on defamation is that in Britain, truth isn't a defense; the "victim" only has to prove they've been harmed (anything from financially to reputation) and they not only win, their accuser may wind up paying them damages.

    I don't know how this works in Canada, Australia, or any of the other Commonwealth countries, but one of the jobs of the Commonwealth is to keep all their various legal systems heading more or less the same direction. That would make the USA very much the oddball outlier of the English-speaking world.

    The countries that were never under British Common Law... I'd bet most of them are more like Britain than the USA.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • icon
      JoeCool (profile), 17 Jan 2019 @ 1:39pm

      Re:

      Europe in general, and in particular. When Europeans talk about "free speech", they mean you're free to say anything you're ALLOWED to say. The truth isn't always a part of that. In fact, it's often not part of what's allowed.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Personanongrata, 17 Jan 2019 @ 11:43am

    FBI, Tyranny and Turkeys

    Turkish Court Jails Journalist For Telling The Truth About A Politician's Offshore Tax Shelter

    News Flash.......

    US government stands side by side in solidarity with Turkish Court by sending US gestapo (ie FBI) to detain US born Iranian Journalist while she was visiting family in St Louis Missouri.

    Italicized/bold text was excerpted from a report titled - American-Born Iranian Journalist Detained in U.S. by FBI found at the website www.usnews.com:

    The station learned that Hashemi, born Melanie Franklin of New Orleans, was transferred by the bureau to a detention facility in Washington, D.C., and it says officials have not provided a reason for her arrest.

    According to Press TV, Hashemi, who converted to Islam in 1982, has worked for the station for 25 years. She was in the United States to visit her family and brother, who has cancer. Hashemi could not communicate with her family and was only allowed to contact her daughter two days after being taken into custody, the outlet said.

    https://www.usnews.com/news/politics/articles/2019-01-16/american-born-iranian-journalist-marzieh-h ashemi-detained-by-fbi-while-visiting-us

    It is such a wonderful sight to behold when the US government lowers the nation deeper the sewers so we all may swim together in the sea of shit they so joyfully have created.

    How long can you hold your breath?

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Philly Bob, 17 Jan 2019 @ 12:14pm

    "Shana, They bought their tickets...
    They knew what they were getting into...
    I say... let 'em crash!"

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    TDR, 17 Jan 2019 @ 5:47pm

    Bamboo Boy, if you need a more recent example of civil disobedience, there's Ed Snowden. He risked imprisonment and more and possibly his life to expose how the NSA was and has been abusing its authority and spying on everyone and everything it can whether allowed to or not. Now he is in exile and might never be able to return home or see his family again. He knew what he was getting into, and he felt that revealing the agency's corruption and countless misdeeds to us, the public, was worth the price he knew he would pay. He practiced civil disobedience and is a patriot of the highest order.

    Patriotism isn't blind worship of a flag or a government. It's doing what's best for your country and its people regardless of the cost or legality and without listening to or believing nationalist propaganda. It's exposing corruption in your government and calling out those in power when they're not serving the people.

    Something you don't seem to understand or refuse to admit is that not all laws are good. Many laws, such as copyright in its present state and these anti-journalist laws in Turkey and elsewhere, are unethical and unjust, and it is not wrong to bend or break such laws. Authoritarianism is wrong. While authorities who use their position responsibly and justly are good and should be respected, far too many do not. And it's never wise to take any extreme position - excessive authority inevitably leads to tyranny.

    As Yoda said,"Fear leads to anger. Anger leads to hate. Hate leads to suffering."

    I cannot believe I just quoted one of Prequels! Gah, I need to go watch the Despecialized Edition OT now to get the horrors of the Prequels out of my mind.

    Bamboo Boy, you're about as intelligent and skilled as Admiral Ozzel blundering his way out of hyperspace and into Vader's Force-choke.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]


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