"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, April 26, 2016

2nd Circuit judges who discriminated against out-of-state attorneys licensed in New York either owed New York State a favor or had no litigation experience before coming to the bench

I posted a blog today about the case Schoenefeld v Schneiderman, where two 2nd Circuit judges reversed the decision of the district court and reinstated discrimination by the State of New York against out-of-state attorneys.

Appears that they did that because the State of New York is extremely lenient in allowing them to violate their own registration obligation in New York as attorneys, as a quid pro quo - an exchange of a favorable ruling for a lack of discipline against these judges who would not obey attorney registration rules in New York.

The majority opinion in Schoenefeld v Schneiderman of April 22, 2016 was written by two judges of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 2nd Circuit:

Reena Raggi and Susan Carney.

Judge Susan L. Carney, according to the website of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 2nd Circuit, is not licensed in New York State and, according to other sources, has graduated from the Harvard School of Law.

Judge Carney is reportedly married to journalist Lincoln Caplan who, quite "coincidentally", joined the editorial board of New York Times right around the time of his wife's nomination.

At the time of nomination, Susan Carney reportedly had "mediocre" ABA ratings, reportedly because of her "remarkable dearth of litigation experience".

So, this judge with "remarkable dearth of litigation experience" - who nevertheless was put on one of the highest benches in the country - decided to discriminate against out-of-state attorneys licensed in New York while having, apparently, no clue as to what litigation experience is and what burden she is imposing by requiring of a busy out-of-state attorney to channel his or her litigation through a physical office in New York, practically forcing that attorney to move into New York in order to maintain a law practice there.

Judge Reena Raggi of the 2nd Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals appointed in 2002 has the following attorney registration in New York:

The attorney registration rules in New York, which are to be enforceable against every attorney licensed in New York, dictate that whenever an attorney changes her employment, she must change her official registration information within 30 days.

Judge Reena Raggi assumed office in the 2nd Circuit Court of Appeals on October 4, 2002.

She had to re-register in New York, listing her changed place of employment, by November 3, 2002, within 30 days of "assuming office".

14 years later  Judge Raggi still has her registration listing her as a judge of the Eastern District of New York, a BAD violation of attorney registration rules.

THIS is the judge who decided that discrimination of out-of-state attorneys licensed in New York is proper?

Because New York State does not enforce, as it should have, rules of registration that are equal for all attorneys - against the Judge, because the judge will then rule FOR the State of New York?

So, Judge Carney's nomination is promoted by New York Times despite mediocre ratings and no litigation experience because her husband joined the newspaper's editorial board at the time of her supposed nomination.  And she got nominated.

Judge Raggi gets favors from New York in terms of non-enforcement of attorney discipline against her for failure to re-register for 14 years that is punishable for any other attorneys registered in New York - and Judge Raggi rules for the State of New York in return.


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