Human beings will be happier - not when they cure cancer or get to Mars or eliminate racial prejudice or flush Lake Erie but when they find ways to inhabit primitive communities again. That's my utopia.
"I regret making those statements, which resulted in a disruptive impact on the court's management of the proceedings," Ashcroft wrote. "I made a mistake in making statements that could have been considered by the court to be a breach of the court's order."
U.S. Attorney General John D. Ashcroft was sanctioned by a federal judge on Tuesday for twice violating a court-imposed gag order in the Detroit terror trial.
But Ashcroft, the nation's highest-ranking law enforcement officer, will not face criminal charges of contempt of court. He apologized for what he said were inadvertent comments.
"Two serious transgressions committed in this case are simply one too many for the court to abide with no response," U.S. District Judge Gerald E. Rosen wrote in an 83-page opinion. "More than a warning is necessary here."
Rosen criticized comments Ashcroft made at two press conferences -- the first on Oct. 31, 2001, and the second on April 17 -- in which Ashcroft praised a government witness during the trial of four Arab immigrants in Detroit.
Rosen chose to issue a public admonishment, a sanction that falls short of rebuking Ashcroft with a formal reprimand. [ more, if you can stomach it ]