Junkie politics of the criminal bourgeoisie
Source Jurriaan Bendien
Date 03/12/29/15:46

Governor Jeb Bush of Florida, the swindler and election fraudster, has just
dedicated America's first faith-based prison, focused on encouraging the
spirituality of inmates (Al Jazeera report). He told its (nearly 800)
inmates from 26 faiths that religion can help to keep them from landing in
prison again. As well as regular prayer sessions, the Lawtey Correctional
Institution offers religious studies, choir practice, religious counselling
and other spiritual activities 7 days a week. Participation is voluntary,
and inmates are free to transfer out. Bush lauded inmates for committing
themselves "to a higher authority". "This is not just fluffy policy, this is
serious policy," he told the crowd. "For the people who are sceptical about
this initiative, I am proud that Florida is the home to the first
faith-based prison in the United States." During the dedication ceremony,
prisoners jumped to their feet and clapped in rhythm, as a gospel singer
sang "His Eye Is on the Sparrow." Some shouted "Sing it!" and "Amen!" Later,
Bush told the inmates: "I can't think of a better place to reflect on the
awesome love of our lord Jesus than to be here at Lawtey Correctional. God
bless you." At the end of 2002, US prisons and jails held 2,033,331 inmates.
These corrective institutions include private commercial jails.

* * * * *

George W. Bush was arrested for drunken driving in 1976. In 1995, Noelle
Lucila Bush (b. 26 July 1977) was arrested for shoplifting at an Arizona

In June, 1999 Columba Bush, the mother of Noelle Lucila Bush, tried to sneak
some $19,000 in jewelry and clothes she had picked up on a Paris shopping
spree past US Customs officials in Atlanta . First, she falsely claimed on
her declaration form to have bought only $500 worth of goods overseas. When
Customs officials discovered shopping receipts in Mrs. Bush's purse, she was
asked if she wanted to change her story. When the governor's wife insisted
that she had bought only $500 worth of goods in Paris, agents searched her
luggage and found otherwise. Columba Bush got off with an apology and a
$4,100 fine.

 In February 2000, GWB's daughter Barbara Bush was questioned by
Massachusetts police in response to a manager's complaint that a noisy
party at a hotel on Harvard Square involved "several minors in a room
consuming alcohol". A Harvard University Police Department log states that,
"Officers sent to assist him in removing them." Police prepared an incident
report detailing what happened upon their arrival, but Harvard respinded by
refusing to release the document following a TSG request, arguing the
Massachusetts Open Records Law does not apply to the school's police force.
In April 2001 daughter Jenna Bush was cited for underage drinking in an
Austin bar (the legal drinking age in Texas is 21); she pled no contest on
May 16 and was sentenced to community service and alcohol awareness classes.

On 30 May 2001, Jenna and Barbara were both cited by police after attempting
to buy drinks at an Austin Mexican restaurant Chuy's the day before, using
someone else's driver's license. Proprietor Mia Lawrence, who runs Chuy's,
told a police operator on May 29 that she was informing because, "I just
don't want our restaurant to get in trouble." Lawrence, who misidentified
Jenna Bush as "Laura Bush," said that while the underage drinking was "not a
major emergency, it would be police, though." Lawrence noted that she first
tried to call the Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission, but that the liquor
licensing agency was not open after hours. According to the Washington Post,
yet another incident occurred in July 2002, when the girls were spotted (but
not cited for) drinking in a Washington, DC bar.

On 29 January 2002, Jeb Bush's daughter Noelle Lucila Bush (b. 26 July 1977)
was arrested at a Tallahassee Walgreens drugstore after she tried to fill a
false Xanax prescription. The pharmacist became suspicious about the call-in
prescription because it lacked a quantity. When he checked the doctor named
in the call-in, the druggist learned that the doctor no longer practiced.
Police then arrested Noelle and charged her with fraudulently obtaining
Xanax. She told police she was due to begin a new job with Infinity Software
Development, Inc. as an entry-level human resources administrative
assistant. Fraudulently obtaining a prescription is a felony punishable by
up to five years in prison in Florida. However, Noelle avoided jail and was
committed for treatment at the Center for Drug-Free Living. Father Jeb Bush
said, "This is a private issue as it relates to my daughter and myself and
my wife".

In July 2002, Florida Judge Reginald Whitehead jailed Noelle briefly over
three days at Orlando for contempt of court without bail, when she was
caught with a prescription drug belonging to an employee, in violation of
the a requirement of the drug court programme. According to Noelle's lawyer,
Pete Antonacci, she had the pills in her possession for about a half-hour,
but tested negative for having taken them. Antonacci said he didn't know
what the pills were. A letter from the treatment center to Judge Reginald
Whitehead says Noelle was questioned by a staffer who had noticed that she
was carrying pills. Noelle had explained that she had found the pills, but a
nurse said they were taken from a cabinet in her office. The letter
expressed concern about her lack of honesty, and how it related to her
recovery. On June 19, Noelle was discovered to have been "off property
without permission" according to Randy Means, executive director of the
Orange-Osceola state attorney's office. It remained unclear how long she was
missing, or what she was doing at the time. She was assigned to perform
community service as punishment for that incident.

Then, on 9 September 2002, police received an anonymous call from a fellow
patient at the treatment center, stating that  Noelle had been caught with a
0.2-gram rock of crack cocaine in her shoe. The transcript of the telephone
call at the Orlando Police Department stated "One of the women here was
caught buying crack cocaine tonight. And a lot of the women are upset
because she's been caught about five times. And we want something done
because our children are here, and they just keep letting it slip under the
counter and carpet... She does this all the time and she gets out of it
because she's the governor's daughter. But we're sick of it here 'cause we
have to do what's right, but she gets treated like some kind of princess.
And everybody's tired of it, you know. We're just trying to get our lives
together, and this girl's bringing drugs on property." Six police cruisers
converged on the center. Police sergeant Orlando Rolon explained the
original officer dispatched had to call a supervisor with a test kit to
perform a field test on the drug, and that "Law enforcement officers are by
nature always curious, especially if you are a squad member".

Center employee Julia Elias, who had discovered the drug, initially offered
a written statement to the police. But a supervisor ordered Elias not to
cooperate with investigators, and Elias destroyed the statement. Police
spokeswoman Teresa Shipley said later staffers at the center had ripped up
the responding officer's report, and told him that the matter should be
handled in-house. The officer however retrieved his report from a trash can.
"If people are forced to disclose, everyone would have to re-examine the
kinds of issues that are discussed in the therapeutic arena," explained
Kermit Dahlen, president and chief executive the Gordon Recovery Center in
Sioux City, Iowa. "They would have to warn their clients that they shouldn't
talk about anything they wouldn't want disclosed in the future."

Jeb Bush's drug czar, Jim McDonough, commented that Jeb Bush had a
compassionate approach to drug policy that is ``wisely balanced with
prevention, treatment and law enforcement.''  The case was closely watched
by about 14,000 drug treatment centers nationwide, where 1.1 million abusers
sought help in 2001. "The treatment community has a lot to lose if the judge
rules these employees have to testify," said Ronald Hunsicker of the
National Association of Addiction Treatment Providers. "The question is
whether she's being treated in a unique way," says Bruce Bullington, editor
of the Journal of Drug Issues and an associate professor at Florida State
University's school of criminology and criminal justice in Tallahassee. "I
think she is."

On 30 September 2002, the court blocked police from questioning employees
that found the crack cocaine in Noelle's shoe. The Orange County Florida
State's Attorney had filed a motion to compel the witnesses to testify
pursuant to a legal exception clause (Federal Confidentiality Regulations,
42 U.S.C. 290dd-2; 42 C.F.R. Part 2) which permits disclosure to report
crimes on program premises to law enforcement officials. But Orange County
Circuit Court chief Judge Belvin Perry, Jr. denied the motion, arguing that
society's interest in providing treatment for drug offenders and addressing
the cycle of addiction outweighed the State's interest in investigating the
crime of drug possession on treatment premises. Perry said he had carefully
weighed the interest of police and prosecutors to investigate crime against
the state Legislature's intent to address drug abuse through treatment. The
confidentiality law, passed in 1970, restricted the disclosure of records
for patients in drug abuse treatment centres, as a way of encouraging people
to seek treatment for addiction. Perry said he thought it likely that many
drug addicts at some point during treatment would be caught in possession of
drugs, and delivering them each time to a court to face new charges, would
render intervention programs meaningless. Noelle was required to appear
before Circuit Judge Reginald Whitehead every two weeks.

On 8 October 2002 Noelle Bush asked that drug court records be closed on her
case, citing a theory involving "expectation of privacy" with the aim to
preserve her right to privacy in health care information and to a fair
trial. Attorney Peter Antonacci argued the purpose of a drug court was to
help patients complete treatment, and that drug courts should not allow the
same openness as criminal courts. On 15 October 2002, the court however
denied Noelle's request, on the grounds that open access was a critical part
of the success of drug courts (the US drug court system is a pre-trial
programme for people with drug problems, in which a defendant must undergo
counseling and treatment over a minimum one-year period, after which charges
pending may be dropped - it emphasises rehabilitation and breaking the
addiction leading to offences).

 "Open access is critical so that the public can see that drug court is
working to reduce the recidivism rate and to return individuals to a
productive state," the Judge  wrote in the ruling. "Open access is necessary
in order to demonstrate that the program is worthy of public support."  He
noted that drug court proceedings, health care issues were discussed at
detailed "staffing" meetings that are private, while regular status hearings
in court were short and involved little or no discussion of medical or
treatment information.  On 17 October 2002 Noelle was sentenced in contempt
of court, and led handcuffed to Orange County jail for a ten day stay. On
the same day, President George W. Bush, visited Florida to discuss education
at a New Smyrna Beach elementary school, and held a fund raiser for his
brother's re-election campaign.

Upon release, Noelle, who had dyed her hair reddish-blonde, waited 10 hours
before she appeared in front of Whitehead for less than a minute. "I took
the time to let you see a full drug court session, because it's been a while
since you've been in a drug court session and seen other people in drug
court," Whitehead said. Whitehead told Bush that he had talked to her case
manager and workers in her drug treatment program. "You seem to be on track
so far," Whitehead said. When asked if she had any concerns, Noelle said
"No." "Just hang in there and stay focused and do everything you can to help
yourself, not anybody else. OK?" Judge Whitehead told her. On 8 August 2003,
Noelle was released from rehabilitation to the custody of her parents.

At the drug court hearing at Orange County Courthouse, Noelle hugged Circuit
Judge Reginald Whitehead, after he congratulated her on making it through
the stringent drug-rehabilitation program, while  Jeb and his wife Columba
looked on and smiled. "The one thing you should remember is that everything
you've learned in this program is important," Judge Whitehead said. "Keep it
in your mind, in your heart, and it will make you successful."  "It's been
quite a challenge, and I'm really grateful," Noelle told the judge, dressed
in a polka-dot top and wearing hair extensions. "It's really been an honor
to know you. And thanks to my family and to the staff and everything."
Moments after the 2 pm graduation, the Bush family quickly left the
courthouse without comment to the press.

In November 2002 documents were released from Jeb's office that revealed
details of his involvement in a behind-the-scenes pressure campaign on
behalf of Bacardi-Martini USA. While he was collecting $60,000 of campaign
cash from Bacardi-Martini USA, Inc. this year, Jeb put a "high" priority on
helping Bacardi apply ex parte political pressure on the U.S. patent office
to fix a legal trademark case to Bacardi's benefit.

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