"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).

“This 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, dissenting.

" I do not believe that the practice of law is a "privilege" which empowers Government to deny lawyers their constitutional rights. The mere fact that a lawyer has important responsibilities in society does not require or even permit the State to deprive him of those protections of freedom set out in the Bill of Rights for the precise purpose of insuring the independence of the individual against the Government and those acting for the Government”. Lathrop v Donohue, 367 US 820 (1961), Justice Black, dissenting.

"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.

“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.

Thursday, July 30, 2015

Tomorrow will be the last day on the bench for Carl Becker. People of Delaware County, New York, let's celebrate.

Tomorrow Delaware County will or should celebrate the last day on the bench of Judge Carl Becker, the judge well known for the following:

1) coming to the bench in 2012 by defrauding the voters and demeaning his opponent and, as far as I know, even by buying food for voters in the hope that that will encourage the "correct" vote; I always doubted validity of the "recount vote" that put Becker on the bench instead of his opponent Rosa, when I saw with my own eyes how young black voters were misdirected at the polls to go to the Board of Elections in Delhi for ballots while such ballots had to be available at the booths.  

The other reason to doubt validity of the vote was loyalty of the Delaware County Board of Elections to Becker to the point that the Board of Elections officials filed with the Delaware County Clerk a false certification of Becker's 2002 elections when I raised the issue that Becker is not a legitimately elected judge in a motion in 2011 (Becker presided over reviewing the motion, without authority since the motion concerned his own legitimacy as a judge, caused the Board of Elections to file the false certification of his 2002 elections and then sanctioned me for bringing it in one case and agreed that it is non-frivolous in another case - without changing his previous decision that it was frivolous).  

Why the certification filed in 2011 of Becker's elections in 2002 was false, at least in my legal opinion? 

Because, according to the answer of the Delaware County Board of Elections to my FOIL request pertaining to documents from Becker's elections, all original documents, including petitions and ballots, from the 2002 elections were destroyed within 2 years of the elections, in 2004.  It is unlawful to certify anything without underlying original documents.  

Yet, the Delaware County Board of Elections did that for Becker who represented the County for 27 years and kept close ties, to the point of ex parte communications with County officials during litigation, for the duration of his stay on the bench.

2) habitually concealing his disqualifying conflicts of interest derived from his previous work for 27 years as an attorney for the Delaware County Department of Social Services;

3) habitually putting the interests of Delaware County, its public officials and employees, the judge's friends, above the law;

4) habitually engaging in vindictive conduct against litigants, their family members and their attorneys if they raised issues of misconduct of Delaware County public officials or employees, including Judge Becker himself;

5) habitually engaging in ex parte communications pertaining to court proceedings with social services, police, school officials and favored attorneys and suppressing such evidence by retaliation against challengers;

6) being habitually rude to the "chosen" litigants and counsel, especially women;

7) being habitually and adamantly incompetent and advancing his own incompetence as the law of Delaware County;

8) using his official position for personal gain or advantage - before and after he came to the bench.

That's quite a legacy.

Tomorrow, on his last day of self-service and service to his buddies that lasted since 2002 (a devil's dozen of years), good riddance and let's not put Becker' equivalents - Kirkwood and Northrup - on the bench.

Voters, please, remember that once you put Kirkwood and Northrup on the bench, nobody will ever take them down, nobody will discipline them, the NYS Commission for Judicial Conduct will be tossing your complaints about their misconduct (if they are engaged in gross misconduct now, it will be "out of character" for them not to do that when they gain more power).

So, while you see Porter Kirkwood's bulky figure going around the streets of Delhi and smiling to residents to catch their eyeballs and support for the future elections - please, remember.  What represents Kirkwood and Northrup are their deeds.

And their deeds, as the recently announced "buy the prosecutor" deal when the new prosecutorial position is paid, with the blessing of both Northrup and Kirkwood, out of convictions, making prosecutors practically bought by the probation and the police (who are also, by the way, financed out of conviction fines, providing an incentive for the police to stop you, residents of Delaware County, unlawfully, and to collude with Northrup as a prosecutor to provide false statement to the court - to secure convictions and funds for the prosecutor).

And these ugly deeds, ladies and gentlemen, cannot be covered by any smiley faces.

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