"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.

Friday, September 4, 2015

The circus with the defiant Kentucky clerk - and the silence of the masses as to the similarly defiant courts and attorney disciplinary committees

The whole country - and the world (I read news from foreign news agencies, too) - is monitoring the developments in the case of the defiant "born-again-Christian" married-four-times-with-children-out-of wedlock Kentucky clerk, an elected public official who went to jail while asserting her God's authority to defy court orders and deny gay couples marriage licenses.

Yet, the decision of the U.S. Supreme Court legitimizing the gay marriage was issued in June of 2015 and affects a comparatively small group of people.

Yet, in February of 2015 the same U.S. Supreme Court issued a decision affecting the entire country, affecting how 1/3 of American jobs are regulated, whether new jobs will be able to be created in the struggling American economy, whether private interest groups will be able to remove good judges and prosecutors (elected public officials) while keeping bad judges and prosecutors in power to further private issues, and it has been defied by state governments since then.

All the country knows the name of the defiant Kentucky clerk.

A media circus and a circus of demonstrators was outside the courthouse where Kim Davis' contempt case was heard.

A small plane was flying over the courthouse with a suspended banner saying "Kim Stand Firm".

Yet, at the very same time, 7 months after the decision of the U.S. Supreme Court declaring that 1/3 of American jobs are governed by anticompetitive private groups, thus stifling the economy and preventing people from earning a livelihood, on the one hand, and obtaining diverse and affordable services, on the other:

  • the names of
    • legislators;
    • judges;
    • attorneys of the disciplinary committees
who continue to defy the February 25, 2015 order of the U.S. Supreme Court are not known to the public, and the public is seemingly unaware of the significance of that case and is not actively trying to make their states enforce that court order.

It is not as entertaining as the issue of gay marriage has become?

No suspended banners saying:

"Judge XYZ stay firm - your brothers will never jail you"

I guess, such suspended banners are not needed.

Judges will simply defy the law - and other judges will simply endorse them.

By the way, there is one defiant judge who might, after all, get publicity on par with Kim Davis - a Tennessee judge who refused to divorce a straight couple because, in the judge's opionion, the U.S. Supreme Court decision legalizing the gay marriage made the judge unable to grasp what constitutes divorce.

I will hold my breath as to whether that judge will be jailed. 

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