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View Diary: New Information Emerges on Pope John Paul II (308 comments)

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  •  No, his medicine testing positive would be (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    KenBee, Ginny in CO, The Walrus, WB Reeves

    physical evidence.  I think you need to go review what different types of evidence mean.

    There revolution will not be televised. But it will be blogged, a lot. Probably more so than is necessary.

    by AoT on Wed Jul 04, 2012 at 09:40:52 PM PDT

    [ Parent ]

    •  Where Did You Get Your Law Degree? (0+ / 0-)

      The place where I got mine taught me in a class entitled "Evidence" that there are two types of evidence, direct and circumstatial.  Direct evidence is when someone testifies that they either performed an act or witnesses an event.    

      Circumstantial evidence is all other types of evidence.  Thus, physical evidence is circumstantial evidence.  

      To use an example from law school, in a case where  cookies were stolen from a cookie jar, if I saw you take a cookie from my cookie jar and eat it, that would be direct evidence you stole cookies.  If I heard a crash, entered my kitchen and saw you there, with cookie crumbs around your mouth and my cookie jar broken on the floor, that would be circumstantial evidencen you stole cookies.

       

      •  Um, we aren't talking about a court case (0+ / 0-)

        To use the cookie jar example.  If there are cookies missing from the jar then we know, because of physical evidence, that someone has taken a cookie.  If someone destroyed the jar and there were people who would benefit from destroying the jar then there would be a small bit of circumstantial evidence that one of them destroyed the jar.

        There has never been a court case about whether someone has been murdered, only over whether a specific person murdered them.  If you were going to have a court case over whether someone was murdered then I'd say poison in their medicine jar would be pretty damning physical evidence.

        Not that they found that.  They didn't find anything. That's why there is circumstantial evidence of murder.

        There revolution will not be televised. But it will be blogged, a lot. Probably more so than is necessary.

        by AoT on Thu Jul 05, 2012 at 08:35:46 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Right---You Claimed I was Wrong When I Stated (0+ / 0-)

          that a medicine bottle would be circumstantial evidence.  

          However, I was actually correct.  Now that I have politely pointed out your error, in an old diary that no one will be reading, you continue to repeat the same error.

          Let me be clear, most all physical evidence is circumstantial evidence.  (Note that I say most because, as an experienced lawyer, I know that there may be some exceptions that I am not aware of.)  

          Circumstantial evidence is evidence that we must draw inferences from.  Missing bottle--the inference you seek to draw from that fact is that the bottle was intentionally destroyed because it contained poison which was used to murder the pope.  

          If the bottle were located and found to contain poison that would produce symptoms consistent with the pope's death---the inference to be drawn is that the pope was mudrered by the poison contained in the bottle.  

          So actually the bottle, if never found, or if found and proven to have contained poison, would be circumstantial evidence.  

          What we are really discussing is whether the inferences drawn from the circumstantial evidence are weak or strong.  I think we would both agree that the inference would be very strong if the pope's medicine bottle were located and shown to contain poison.  Here, we have no dispute.

          However, I do have a dispute with those who claim that a missing medicine creates an inference that the pope was poisoned.  Nor do I think that the fact the medicine bottle is missing, even when combined with the fact there was no autopsey performed, allows one to infer that the pope was poisoned.

          Missing medicine bottle combined with no autopsey does not allow reasonable, rational people to infer murder via poisoning.  To the extent that some people are making this claim, they are simply being unreasonable and irrational.  There are many reasons that a medicine bottle might go missing after its owner dies that don't include murder by poisoning.  There are also reasons why a religious leader like a Pope would not have an autopsey performed on his corpse, that don't point to poisoning. And that a religious leader may also have enemies isn't a suprise either.  

          Let's look at how weak or how strong the inferences are that we can draw from the fact that the Pope's medicine bottle went missing.  To me, the strongest inference is that it was thrown away after the Pope died.  Medicine isn't recycled. Instead, people are told to discard old medicine.  If you were told to clean the Pope's quarters after he died and the body was removed, what would you have done with the bottle?  Me, I most likely would have thrown it in the trash.

          The inference you seek to draw--that the murderer or murderers came back after the pope was dead and took the bottle to dispose of it, hoping that it would not be missed, is very weak.  Can we say this every time a bottle of medicine is missing and the someone who was taking the medicine dies?  Objects that are lost, misplaced or , inadvertaintly throw away are common occurances, while those stolen by poisoners to cover up their tracks, I think we can both agree, are very unlikely.    

          What I think happened is that the author of the poison medicine bottle theory picked the bottle as the method of administration because it was missing.  If it were not missing, then a water glass would have been picked, or the prior day's meal, or any of thousand ways poison could be administered.  However, there still would be any evidence supporting the inference that poisoning killed the pope.    

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