"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, June 16, 2016

Unlawful harassment by #JudgeDanPolster of New Jersey attorney John McDermott continues - even after Judge Polster's behavior was clearly invalidated by the just-decided U.S. Supreme Court case on point

I wrote on this blog recently about outrageous harassment of a New Jersey attorney John McDermott by federal judge from Ohio Dan Polster.

Judge Dan Polster, on the same day, issued an order dismissing the lawsuit against John McDermott's brother and, at the same time, issued an order requiring John McDermott (who was not attorney of record for any parties in that case, was not admitted to practice law in the state of Ohio or in Judge Polster's court) to personally appear THE NEXT DAY to answer civil contempt charges as to why he should not be held in contempt for allegedly telling his brother not to appear at the case management conference (on the day when his brother's motion to dismiss was granted by the same judge and the case against the brother was dismissed).

There is no indication in the docket that John McDermott was served with the order to appear in civil contempt proceedings, or with the bench warrant.

John McDermott is, once again, practicing and living in New Jersey, and Judge Polster was summoning John McDermott to appear in Ohio the next day after the order to appear was issued, and without serving the order on John McDermott.

Actions of Judge Polster were clearly illegal.

Whenever people's liberty is involved, they have to be served with such warrants personally or at the very least by certified mail.

It takes time for orders to travel from state to state, so Judge McDermott definitely had no right to expect John McDermott to appear in federal court without ever having being served with the contempt charges in accordance to the law.

Moreover, the contempt charges were issued by Judge Polster, making Judge Polster an accuser against John McDermott.

On June 9, 2016 the U.S. Supreme Court made a decision in Williams v Pennsylvania, 579 U.S. __ (2016) holding, among other things, that when an accuser also acts as an adjudicator in the same court proceeding, such a situation constitutes a violation of the due process of the accused.

In other words, a judge cannot act as an accuser and prosecutor in the same court case.

Yet, that is exactly what Judge Polster is doing in his standoff against attorney John McDermott.

Judge Polster accused John McDermott of misconduct in a sua sponte order of June 7, 2016, before the decision in Williams v Pennsylvania was made, and, two days later, after the U.S. Supreme Court clearly ruled that behavior such as Judge Polster's in acting as an accuser, prosecutor and adjudicator in the same court case, is a violation of the accused's due process rights, Judge Polster adamantly continued, and still continues, to adjudicate the civil contempt case against attorney McDermott despite being the accuser in the same case.

Realizing that attorney John McDermott will not waive lack of jurisdiction over himself and will not appear in the illegal contempt proceedings, Judge Polster reportedly replaced his bench warrant with a $500/a day fine against attorney John McDermott.

Judge Polster's order imposing a fine upon John McDermott is dated June 15, 2016, nearly a week after the Williams v Pennsylvnia decision that indicated that not only an accuser cannot also be a judge in the same case, but the judge's failure to recuse from such a case is a violation of due process of law of the accused.

If Judge Polster wanted to act fairly with Attorney John McDermott, he should have acted as a complainant in the case, but should have recused from adjudicating the case.

Apparently, Judge Polster does not want to be fair, he wants to show to John McDermott and to everybody else that his power is unlimited, law or no law, and that he can do anything to people with impunity.

It is obviously personal to Judge Polster that he was disobeyed, no matter how unlawful, petty and unfair his infantile demands are which are based on unlawful knee-jerk orders that were filed, but not served upon the accused individual.

The media report about the ongoing standoff did not mention unlawfulness of Judge Polster's actions, their stark contradiction with the judge-established U.S. Supreme Court precedent.


In Alabama, the Chief Judge is now being investigated, and will possibly be removed because he disobeyed a U.S. Supreme Court precedent on gay marriage.

Here, a federal judge is acting as a petty tyrant and disobeys the U.S. Supreme Court precedent on point prohibiting an accuser in a court case to adjudicate that same court case.

I wonder whether any discipline will be imposed on Judge Polster based on his outrageous misconduct.

I will  continue to follow this story and to cover it on this blog.

Stay tuned.

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