"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.

Tuesday, October 20, 2015

The not-so-sharp Gary Sharpe is replaced in his position of Chief Judge of Northern District of New York - by yet another former prosecutor Glenn Suddaby

Since 2000 the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of New York was led exclusively by former prosecutors.

First it was former prosecutor and former Onondaga County assistant District Attorney Judge Scullin who served as Chief Judge 2000 to 2006.

Then it was former prosecutor and former Onondaga County district attorney Judge Mordue who served as Chief Judge from 2006 to 2011.

Then it was not-so-sharp Judge Sharpe who punishes people for correct reading of the 11th Amendment.  Judge Sharpe served as Chief Judge of NDNY from 2011 to, as far as I understand, end of August of 2015 when Judge Suddaby was appointed in his place. 

Before becoming a federal judge, Judge Sharpe toiled as a prosecutor in the New York State Attorney General's office, and then in the U.S. Attorney's office, and left a son as his successor for each of his former employers, who continued to appear in front of Judge Sharpe after employing his sons.

Now it is a career prosecutor and former Onondaga County assistant district attorney Judge Suddaby who replaced Judge Sharpe as Chief Judge in NDNY.

By the way, the current Chief Magistrate that regularly pairs up with Suddaby, Sharpe, Mordue and Scullin while presiding over civil rights cases - and regularly tosses them on court-contrived grounds that have nothing to do with the U.S. Constitution or the Civil Rights Act - is David Peebles, yet another former assistant district attorney from Onondaga County.

As we see, former prosecutors led the NDNY court for the past 15 years, and former prosecutors from Onondaga County District Attorney's office have led the court for 11 out of those 15 years, including now.

That is, while the law school roommate and buddy of the current Onondaga County District Attorney William Fitzpatrick Judge James Tormey, and Fitzpatrick himself are being sued in the same court where so many judges, including the Chief Judge are Fitzpatrick's former colleagues in the Onondaga County District Attorney's office and might very well know him personally.

The court, as far as I could see in the docket of that lawsuit, never attempted disclosure or transfer of the case to another court due to the HUGE appearance of impropriety.

Well, at least appointment of Judge Suddaby removed the embarrassment of having a Chief judge of a federal court who cannot read the U.S. Constitution that he is sworn to protect - and who presides over and rules for cases where his sons' two employers (U.S. Attorney and New York State Attorney General) are appearing.

Yet, Suddaby, as a career prosecutor, has a prosecutorial mentality which, coupled with absolute prosecutorial immunity that Suddaby "enjoyed" for his entire legal career could not but breed a special kind of arrogance and disdain to the rule of law and a sense of entitlement.

The entitlement that allows Suddaby to regularly preside, without disclosure, over cases where his former employer the Onondaga County is sued (according to my review of cases on and ruling for that former employer.

When prosecutors become judges reviewing civil rights cases, you know civil rights will be screwed, and they are.

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