Skip to comments.Your Eminence could use a few deposition tips
Posted on 05/08/2002 3:23:33 AM PDT by billorites
Cardinal Law, repeat after me: ``To the best of my present recollection . . .''
It's very important for you to remember that phrase this morning at the deposition, Your Eminence.
Note that you don't say ``recollection,'' you say ``present recollection'' - that extra adjective gives you just a bit more wiggle room, should some inconvenient document or witness turn up later.
That ``present'' could allow you later to, ahem, amend your earlier testimony, should it prove - you'll pardon the expression - perjurious.
Poor Cardinal Law. As the 71-year-old archbishop does the perp walk for the very first time this morning, he has learned a very important life lesson:
It's one thing to mess around with altar boys, or allow your pervert priests to, but never, ever screw around with an ambulance chaser.
Mitchell Garabedian has 10 million reasons to be angry with His Eminence, and all of them have George Washington's picture on them. And so this morning, unless he and his red hat fled under the cover of darkness, the ``embattled'' Bernard Cardinal Law will face the music or, at least, Garabedian.
As in every deposition, most of the questioning will be routine, but sooner or later Garabedian will jump ugly and question the cardinal's veracity, at which point His Eminence should throw back at the mouthpiece the immortal words of Bill Clinton under oath: ``I told you what I remember. That doesn't mean my memory is accurate.''
Garabedian is trying to pressure the cardinal back to the table to sign the $30 million payoff to Father Geoghan's first 86 victims, but that'll happen about the same time Father Shanley makes bail.
The cash spigot is being turned off, and the cardinal is going to take one for the team.
The problem for Law is that he is a conceited, pompous fraud - absolutely the last type of guy in the world that you want being deposed under oath. Law has spent his whole life thinking he's the smartest person in the room - plus that, he had God on his side - and his arrogance isn't going to go away just because he's in Pemberton Square.
So far it's been another great week for the archdiocese. Father Shanley returns from a vacation in a Thailand red-light district known as ``Boyztown'' and deplanes wearing a bullet-proof vest and a Dallas Cowboys (or is it Cowboyz?) cap.
From Boys Town to Boyztown - what a long strange trip it's been for the Roman Catholic Church.
Plus, the cardinal has not been getting good legal advice. Given the nature of the charges, it probably wouldn't have been wise to go with a white-shoe law firm, but the archdiocese has made an even worse move. The Wilson Rogers, father and son, appear to be wannabe white-shoes, future Knights of Malta.
Since the Rogers seem to have dropped the ball here, let me share a few tips with His Eminence about depositions, a few of which, to the best of my present recollection, I have given.
First of all, the cardinal must remember that he can't take the Fifth - amendment or commandment.
When preparing for any future depositions, His Eminence should clear the room of all non-lawyers. Donna Morrissey and Father Coyne, this means you! ``Only lawyers'' means you can always invoke attorney-client privilege.
If someone brings you a stack of documents for your review, run fast the way you would if Father Paquin delivered an altar boy to the chancery. Any documents you have studied become discoverable, which means . . . well, just remember Eric MacLeish's Monday afternoon press conference.
If you must review any documents, have the lawyers read them to you. Just remember that old saying, never write when you can speak, never speak when you can nod, never nod when you can wink.
As long as you haven't handled any paper, if Garabedian asks you about the documents, you can always respond:
``To the best of my present recollection . . .''
Look at it this way, Your Eminence. In a few hours it'll all be over. And then you can have somebody call Peter Lynch and find out if you can borrow his jet to fly back to Rome - one way this time. Just make sure the guy making the call is one of your lawyers.
Howie Carr's radio show can be heard every weekday afternoon on WRKO AM 680, WHYN AM 560, WGAN AM 560, WEIM AM 1280, WXTK 95.1 FM or online at howiecarr.org.
Cardinal Law, keep the answers short and sweet. Don't guess or estimate. Just keep chanting, ``To the best of my present recollection . . .''
This line most aptly describes "Cardinal Law".
This bum is the worst of the worst.
Funny how Law's red suit matched the outfit Shanley wore to his Indictment. Maybe they'll get matching cells.
It's one thing to be deposed as a witness with no financial or personal stake in the matter. It's quite different when every question is asked in an effort to get you to say something you don't want to say.
It's an interrogation. It's slightly more comfortable than what we give to al-Qaida members, but it's brutal and it can last for hours.
....AND OIL HEAT!! ...and those things that open up from outside into the basement.....
Being a late entry into the Republic I see no hope for the people and no hope for the success of a Representative Democracy.
A good example is Ted (the swimmer) Kennedy giving advice to "Cardinal Law".
LOL! The Sudafed defense--I've seen it used.
Apparently Cardinal Law took my advice--his most prominently featured testimony was "I can't recall." If he has this many memory lapses in real life, I'd have him checked for Alzheimers.