Michael Cohen, he of Trump infamy, was asked to go to a private room at the courthouse in Manhattan yesterday, July 9, after having reported in to discuss his stay-at-home order, in particular to convert it from furlough status to home confinement. After waiting a bit, he was shackled, arrested, and sent back to a federal prison, which prison as of today remains unnamed.
The first reporting declared that a picture of him on the cover of the New York Post shows him dining outdoors at a restaurant close to his apartment where he has been confined since his release in May due to fears of the coronavirus. So then. Okay, fair game for being sent back to prison so quickly.
But wait: Cohen’s lawyer said yesterday from the steps of said courthouse that they were blindsided. And then more reporting came out in which it appears Cohen was actually refusing yesterday in court to be a good little supplicant, surrender all of his First Amendment rights, and shut the hell up until he serves his remaining time at home. This included talking about anything to do with Trump or the case. With anyone who “might” report on it via media of any sort. And no social media for Cohen either, which could make being locked in at home pretty damned boring. There’s more: one source I found and read also said he is not supposed to be working on a book. Wait. What? Who came up with this one? Was it part of his release agreement? Thinking not but need to find out. Oh, and he wasn’t going to be permitted if he walked out of court to talk to any of the press gathered there waiting for him to come out and talk to him. A gag order plain and simple.
So then, as I’m of the inquiring mind who needs to know, I thought it only made sense to find out whether or not Paul Manafort, whose sentence was far longer and tied to far more wrongdoing, but who also was released early, has ever been seen out and about. It took less than five minutes to find this from the UK’s Daily Mail:
Stay-at-home convicts are typically restricted to one location unless they have permission to visit a doctor, go to church or other limited activities.
But DailyMail.com can reveal that Manafort was at two different addresses Thursday: a residential apartment building where he appears to be living and at his youngest daughter’s suburban home, half a mile away.
The fraudster and his wife Kathleen, 66, drove over to the four-bed property where 34-year-old Andrea Manafort lives with her husband Christopher Shand, arriving around 2 pm in a swish Land Rover Discovery.
Oh, and the date of this story? May 15th, almost two months ago now. Anyone give Manafort permission to be out and about, snappily dressed in his chinos and boaters? During a time when coronavirus cases were surging in suburban Virginia, DC and Maryland?
If this ain’t a double standard, then I don’t know what is. But then, I’m not an attorney so maybe just having some commonsense isn’t enough? Or, perhaps Manafort was given permission to visit his daughter and grandson? If this is the case, wouldn’t it be only fair for Cohen to be given permission to leave his apartment for something as innocuous as a meal at a sidewalk restaurant a block or two from his home? If the difference is permission or lack thereof in Cohen’s case, why isn’t this stated anywhere as of today, July 10th? Or was this never supposed to occur to any of us possessed of inquiring minds who just want answers? Don’t know. And in tandem with the two Supreme Court rulings the same day Cohen is taken into custody, both of which apparently have set the orange one’s hapless hairdo on fire, this just feels like a bridge or two too far to be merely coincidence. It just seems as if every-damned-body is being silenced.