"If the judges interpret the laws themselves, and suffer none else to interpret, they may easily make, of the laws, [a shredded] shipman's hose!" - King James I of England, around 1616.
“No class of the community ought to be allowed freer scope in the expression or publication of opinions as to the capacity, impartiality or integrity of judges than members of the bar. They have the best opportunities of observing and forming a correct judgment. They are in constant attendance on the courts. Hundreds of those who are called on to vote never enter a court-house, or if they do, it is only at intervals as jurors, witnesses or parties. To say that an attorney can only act or speak on this subject under liability to be called to account and to be deprived of his profession and livelihood by the very judge or judges whom he may consider it his duty to attack and expose, is a position too monstrous to be entertained for a moment under our present system,” Justice Sharwood in Ex Parte Steinman and Hensel, 95 Pa 220, 238-39 (1880).
case illustrates to me the serious consequences to the Bar itself of not
affording the full protections of the First Amendment to its applicants for admission.
For this record shows that [the rejected attorney candidate] has many of the
qualities that are needed in the American Bar. It shows not only that [the
rejected attorney candidate] has followed a high moral, ethical and patriotic
course in all of the activities of his life, but also that he combines
these more common virtues with the uncommon virtue of courage to stand by his
principles at any cost.
It is such men as these who have most greatly honored the profession of the
law. The legal profession will lose much of its nobility and its glory if it is
not constantly replenished with lawyers like these. To force the Bar to become a
group of thoroughly orthodox, time-serving, government-fearing individuals is to
humiliate and degrade it.” In
Re Anastaplo, 18 Ill. 2d 182, 163 N.E.2d 429
(1959), cert. granted, 362 U.S. 968 (1960), affirmed over strong
dissent, 366 U.S. 82 (1961), Justice Black, Chief Justice Douglas and Justice Brennan,
“Because the law requires that judges no matter how corrupt, who do not act in the clear absence of jurisdiction while performing a judicial act, are immune from suit, former Judge Ciavarella will escape liability for the vast majority of his conduct in this action. This is, to be sure, against the popular will, but it is the very oath which he is alleged to have so indecently, cavalierly, baselessly and willfully violated for personal gain that requires this Court to find him immune from suit”, District Judge A. Richard Caputo in H.T., et al, v. Ciavarella, Jr, et al, Case No. 3:09-cv-00286-ARC in the U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Pennsylvania, Document 336, page 18, November 20, 2009. This is about judges who were sentencing kids to juvenile detention for kickbacks.
"The legal profession must take great care not to emulate the many occupational groups that have managed to convert licensure from a sharp weapon of public defense into blunt instrument of self-enrichment". Walter Gellhorn, "The Abuse of Occupational Licensing", University of Chicago Law Review, Volume 44 Issue 1, September of 1976.
Tuesday, September 8, 2015
What is good for the goose, must be good for the gander
Individuals were charged with a felony and were eventually convicted on a plea deal.
Porter Kirkwood, a judicial candidate, as well as 19 Delaware County Board members, ok'd a "deal" where a county vehicle was written off at scrap value of $350, according to the audit of NYS Comptroller (see my previous blog post for scans of the audit).
The basis of calculation of value was suggested by the County mechanic.
The vehicle were then sold, at that suggested basis, to the county mechanic's brother, and then resold back to the County mechanic, who drove the vehicle (a 2008 Chevrolet Impala), which obviously suggests that the vehicle was far from scrap.
So, telling the government that a lightning destroyed the value of personal property is fraud prosecutable as a felony.
Telling the taxpayer, because of self-interest, that a good vehicle in drivable condition is scrap, selling it as scrap to a relative of County employee who immediately resells it back to the County mechanic who operated as an assessment expert and made the expert pronouncement that the vehicle is not worth more than "scrap" - and immediately starts driving that "scrap" - is not fraud?
Are we all living beyond the looking glass?
Why isn't Porter Kirkwood, the senior County mechanic, his brother and all board members who approved the "deal" are not yet criminally investigated?
Why are Porter Kirkwood and the Board members not being impeached?
Why do we allow the perversity of justice - where Porter Kirkwood who was just caught red-handed in a fraudulent involvement is, instead of being criminally investigated, running for a judicial office and is being endorsed by various parties and public officials?
Why is Richard Northrup, the County District Attorney who failed to prosecute Porter Kirkwood and who accepted an illegal financial arrangement for Richard Northrup's third prosecutor from Porter Kirkwood's client, the County Board, at the time when Porter Kirkwood AND the Board should have been investigated BY RICHARD NORTHRUP for fraud as a result of the recent audit - why is this prosecutor endorsed and allowed to run for public office?
The very same Board that claimed that the illegal financial arrangement where the third prosecutor was supposed to have his or her benefits paid out of conviction fines was supposed to save taxpayers' money, were blatantly stealing taxpayers money by endorsing deals of selling taxpayer-owned good vehicles for scrap and awarding $129.6 MILLION plus $770,000 to unknown vendors without ANY public bidding!
When such public bidding:
(1) could have saved Delaware County taxpayers millions of dollars when only the lowest bid for the best job would be accepted, after the public bidding, and
(2) could have given job to thousands of local vendors of goods and services.
And Porter Kirkwood who ok'ed these shameless deals is now pretending to have integrity for the judicial office?
Vote against Porter Kirkwood!
Vote for Gary Rosa!
And - I suggest that people should start petitioning the New York State Attorney General and the Governor to impeach DA Northrup and County Attorney Porter Kirkwood for their misconduct in office, to appoint special investigators and special prosecutors of their misconduct, to convene a grand jury to hear their cases - and to file complaints with the Attorney Disciplinary committee requesting their disbarment for misconduct.
People in power must abide by and be subject to the same laws as those against whom people in power enforce these same laws.
Otherwise, the concept of the rule of law and of equal protection of laws is a joke.