Tag Archives: Austin

First Friday of Fall (FFF) & Final Friday of September (FFS)—Equinox, Tuesday, September 23-Friday September 26

Q:   How is the Reverend Barry Taylor just like Jonah’s shady bush outside of Ninevah?  (Jonah is one of the most embarrassing books in the Bible, from the standpoint of those, like me, who “want to believe”.  The Book of Jonah’s four short chapters are filled with oversized man-housing whales which act like jails and tree-eating worms who do Gods bidding and expressions that God cares for wicked Ninevites and their animals…and whose sole moral point is that we must accept the will and acts of God, no matter how arbitrary and capricious, inequitable, and unfair they may seem….)

A:   Apparently because God gave his teaching to us for our temporary comfort only, and what God gives easily, God can take away with equal ease.  We did not create Barry Taylor, so we cannot complain that he is now gone.

Comment: but I have drunk from many wells I did not dig, have been warmed by fires I did not build, and drunk wine from grapes I neither picked nor crushed….and yet I was right to do so, was I not?

“Final Fridays and First Fridays” remind me of the wonderful parties that the late Molly Ivins used to put on in Austin, Texas….at which I was privileged to attend regularly, a long, long time ago, in a gallaxy far away, when Texas was a land of free speech, liberty, and ruled by the WD 40 crowd (“White Democrats over Forty”).  That really WAS a long time ago, wasn’t it?   Molly, born in beautiful Monterrey, in 1944 while some of my cousins were stationed in the Navy there, was a native Californian who tragically died of Cancer at the age of 63 on January 31, 2007—she had so much more to say and write about her adopted state.  Molly’s death, and the loss of her community, was definitely one of the major (contributing) factors prompting me to give up and leave my native state.  And now I’m in California half the time and Louisiana half the time.  I cannot tell in which state I enjoy living more: the food and girls are way better in New Orleans, the shopping and museums are better in Los Angeles…. New Orleans has lots of history and beauty.  Los Angeles has lots of money and power.  I feel at peace in New Orleans.  I feel I am a piece of Los Angeles.  

On this Final Friday of September, First Friday of Fall, I think it is time to go back to New Orleans.  The Reverend Barry Taylor is gone from Los Angeles—it’s now cool enough in New Orleans to enjoy the food and chase the girls…  Summer is HELL in New Orleans…. No time of year is really hellish in Los Angeles.  There was a time (around 1992-1994) when they described the four seasons of Los Angeles as “Earthquakes, Brushfires, Riots, and Floods”—rather like the Four Creations of the Maya Popol Vuh or the Five Creations of the Aztec Calendar Stone….Pierre du Soleil ou Calendrier Azteque.

Well, for me at least it was a very intense summer.  Fall will be quieter, I think, wherever I am.  Summer was so intense I cannot quite remember where my summer began.   For me summer began either in New Jersey or Florida, but without studying my travel records or receipts carefully, I’m pretty sure I greeted the Summer Solstice 93 days ago in either Ocala or Orlando, Florida.  I discovered a really good German restaurant in Orlando (the Bauern-Stube, http://www.bauern-stube.com/).  

That schnitzel & dumpling place was the only good thing I really can say about my excursion to Florida, except that I wrote and prepared a really good appellate brief for a really unworthy client (WTO 12 June EMERGENCY MOTION FOR ORDER TO SHOW CAUSE IN THE FIFTH DISTRICT COURT OF APPEAL; 2014 6 12 final Appendix to emergency motion) who ultimately (well, actually, almost immediately) stabbed me in the back… and so I left Florida.

I ended the summer and began the Fall in Beverly Hills, California, in the midst of great turmoil.  On the one hand, I am tortured by the departure of the Reverend Barry Taylor from All Saints in Beverly Hills, especially on such complete absence of notice or warning, amid such dark but unspecified charges “not that anyone plans on pressing charges…”  On the other hand, I brought Croatian ex-Diplomat and New Right Political Philosopher to the Beverly Hills JEM Center where he preached New Right Philosophy to Beverly Hills’ Jewish Community…. I expected some negative reaction here, but instead the negative reaction was all from my fellow conservatives who felt I had done something desperately wrong…. and some even shunned Dr. Sunic as a consequence.   We shall see how all that plays out…. 

Do Dead Lawyers Lie Still?—Attorney-Client Privilege and its Oxymoronic Effect on “Legal Ethics”

Every truth is routinely denied and falsified, every lie is affirmed and promoted.  So as I, with Mephistopheles, so often like to state: “Ich bin der Geist der stets verneint, und das mit Recht, denn Alles was entsteht, Ist werth daß es zu Grunde geht.”

Montana State Representative (former State Senator, all-time great guy) Jerry O’Neil and I have spent many hours discussing the question: what IS it that a LICENSED ATTORNEY can do that really makes a license worth having?  I am a thrice disbarred attorney, basically a victim of political games played by evil NeoCons in Texas.  Jerry O’Neil has obtained a license to practice as an “advocate and counselor” from several Indian Nations, notably the Blackfeet, but he has never sought the license of any state.  If ETHICS were the sole test of qualifications to be an attorney—Jerry O’Neil would be recognized as one of the greatest of all time, in fact, he would probably at the very least be on the Montana Supreme Court.   

What Jerry and I have concluded, along with many other people, is that, in terms of functional definition, relatable to any part of the U.S. Constitution, a lawyer is a person who takes the First Amendment VERY SERIOUSLY and does EVERYTHING in the second half (non-religious) clause of the First Amendment routinely:  An attorney SPEAKS, he produces and uses the press (i.e. printed matter) prodigiously, he peaceably assembles with others, and, above all, he PETITIONS the Government (and other private citizens) for REDRESS OF GRIEVANCES.

But whereas the United States Supreme Court has found that there can be no licensing whatsoever for ANY aspect of religious practice (the first two clauses of the First Amendment) and has similarly said that there can be no “prior restraint”, i.e. censorship, of freedom of speech or the right to print anything at all, all branches of government, including the Supreme Court, have at least tacitly approved the licensing of attorneys.  

Even though the licensing of priests and preachers of the Gospel would never be tolerated under the free exercise and establishment clauses, even though the licensing of newspapers has throughout U.S. history been regarded as an abomination.  It DOES matter that the NDAA and Patriot Act have had a major limiting effect on America’s traditional freedom of speech, but my concern tonight, on this First Day of July and the beginning of the Second Half of the Year, is more parochial:

Is it at all legitimate that TWO of the few things lawyers can CLEARLY get by with doing, with more impunity and immunity, than anyone else (except President Obama himself) are TO LIE and TO KEEP SECRETS.

One of the more famous sources and/or manifestations of the lawyer’s ability to lie and keep secrets is known as “the attorney-client privilege.”  The basic idea, I think, is to encourage attorney-client candor, and to prevent a client from fearing to tell his attorney “the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth” simply because the attorney (without the privilege) might have to tell the whole world.  This makes sense and is positive, but DOES IT REALLY MAKE SENSE and IS IT REALLY POSITIVE if construed as broadly as it seems to be in the modern world?  

Given broad construction, is the attorney-client privilege not an instrument of corruption in and damnation against society?

For example, imagine if you will an upper middle class Father, a doctor, a surgeon perhaps, who has voluntarily relinquished his paternal rights in court so as to avoid further liability for child support and his ex-wives’ attorneys fees.  This doctor has, in both form and effect, “sold” his daughter and permitted her adoption by her new husband, who is neither a professional nor anything like the biological father.   The doctor would now claim duress.  He would claim fraud and coercion.  In particular, though the doctor/surgeon claims that since he was not able to arrange a complete discharge of his (admittedly unfair, oppressive, possibly illegal, but nonetheless Court ordered and enforced) financial obligations, he should have his daughter back.

Suppose this doctor hires a socio-political advisor and consultant.  Suppose that the socio-political advisor and consultant concludes that the doctor/surgeon is unfit as a man or a father, or even to claim those names and titles.  Suppose that the advisor and consultant concludes that this man, the doctor/surgeon cannot possibly be a competent father.  Suppose that the private advisor and consultant concludes this only after spending a total of nearly four weeks with this doctor.  

Suppose that the consultant concludes that a man is unfit to be a father if that “man” turns out in reality to be a pusillanimous pup who (1) breaks down in uncontrollable tears at every discussion of his serious legal and social problems, (2) speaks more-or-less constantly of his fear of prison, his fear of suffering, and his desire for death, (3) elaborates graphically upon his suicidal ideation, (4) his plans for international flight, and/or digging a bomb-proof air-shelter or bunker in his front yard, (5) a man who is confused and distressed within the confines of his own financial, professional, and even his sexual competence and prowess.  

Suppose further that the advisor and consultant is also a socio-political advocate for the regeneration of Traditional American Values, including Christian sacrifice, individual responsibility and manliness.  SHOULD THIS SOCIO-POLITICAL CONSULTANT CONSIDER HIMSELF, because of the pendency of legal proceedings, to be bound in any sense by analogy with the attorney-client privilege?  In other words, should an advisor keep secrets or tell the truth?  Will society benefit more from a conspiracy of silence (which is one of the licensed attorney’s true “superpowers”) or from exposing reality?

Should the advisor REMAIN SILENT, OR SHOULD HE SPEAK OUT, and by way of an “intervention” of sorts, do EVERYTHING IN HIS POWER EITHER TO SHOCK THE DOCTOR/SURGEON BY PUBLIC SHAME INTO REFORMING HIMSELF OR TO PROTECT HIS (presumably) INNOCENT TEENAGE DAUGHTER FROM HER DEEPLY UNSTABLE, ONLY MARGINALLY MENTALLY COMPETENT FATHER?  

Is not “intervention” the approved means, an emotional shock therapy preferable by far to the electro-shocks or lobotomies so long administered by the sadistic practitioners of primitive psychology and psychiatry, of approaching an addicted or deranged person mired in psychological turmoil?  

Analogy: the confessional and penitential privilege, the web of hypocritical deceit and deception to which the attorney-client privilege is often compared, which was and still is one of the primary sources of and shields for the child-buggery, priest-pederastry scandals plaguing the Roman Catholic Church.  Given that Christ assured an eternal lake of fire for those who harm little children, and that priests are quite literally sworn as Christ’s fiduciary vicars, is the penitential privilege  not an intolerably inconsistent thing to be scorned, derided, and abolished rather than preserved?  

The root concept of justice, throughout history, has been to illuminate the dark places of secrecy and hidden lies with sunshine.  The Ancient Sumerians, when oppressed, are known to have rioted violently and en masse in ancient Iraq (4th-early 3rd Millennium Mesopotamia), when any person in that land cried out publicly “I UTU”—an invocation of the Sumerian name of the Sun God (UTU), the supreme god of Justice.  To demand sunshine was to allege a deep cabal of secrecy and hidden lies*** and the people of Ancient Sumer and Akkad apparently found such things intolerable.  They only wanted to live in the sunshine of truth (or so their cuneiform texts seem to suggest: Egypt, by contrast, seems to have been much more comfortable with cultural institutions built upon and treasuring values of hypocrisy, secrecy and lies).

Within the Roman Catholic Church (no other branch of Christianity enforces a celibate priesthood), the confessional-penitential privilege gave rise, over the past near millennium if not more, to countless generations of children who must have hated and feared their priests and the Church as true monstrosities.  The Catholic Priest child molestation scandals have now been going on so long they hardly make the news, but have we reflected sufficiently on the ethical lessons and analytical consequences? A CONSPIRACY OF PERMITTED SECRECY and PROTECTS LIES and LEADS TO HYPOCRISY.  

I suppose this goes also to the question of whether recent Moscow resident Edward Joseph (“Ed”) Snowden, U.S. Constitutional Attorney Glen Greenwald, and other “whistle blowing” internet disclosers (e.g. Julian Assange of Australia) are traitors or among the greatest American (and Australian) Patriots ever to live.  My own bias on and answer to that point may be evident in the way I phrase the question.  My only complaint about Snowden is that he disclosed too little too late….

Attorneys in America have become a cabal, an elite, who control society but do not, for the most part, administer justice at all.  In fact, for the most part, I would submit to you that attorneys BLOCK justice, and the attorney-client privilege is one of their tools for doing so.  

In discussing the entirely hypothetical above, suppose the political consultant asked a local attorney with parallel experience with the same doctor for her opinion.  Under the dogma of “attorney-client privilege”, one North Florida attorney (Beth Gordon) wrote dramatically regarding this scenario: 

“I certainly don’t wish to engage in any kind of discussion . . . , what kind of a parent  [SOMEONE MIGHT BE], or anything else like that. I take my ethical duties very seriously, and therefore don’t wish to engage in anything like this.  . . . As an attorney, you can be appalled by someone’s behavior. You may or may not know this however- you cannot then feel free to share and discuss what you know about the client.”  

OK, as I understand this statement, SO ONE OF THE FIRST RULES OF LAW, THE ATTORNEY’S CREED, IS ONE OF SECRECY, I.E. LEGALLY ENFORCEABLE CENSORSHIP AND REPRESSION OF TRUTHFUL SPEECH—NOT MERELY IN THE CONTEXT OF A TRIAL WHERE AN INDIVIDUAL’S INNOCENCE MUST BE PRESUMED UNTIL PROVEN GUILTY—AND THE WHOLE POINT OF HIRING A LAWYER FOR A TRIAL WOULD BE DEFEATED IF THE LAWYER COULD BLURT OUT: “HE TOLD ME HE KILLED THE VICTIM, YOUR HONOR, THAT’S WHY HE HIRED ME.”  

So, the ritual presumption of innocence in criminal proceedings requires some sort of discretion on the part of an advocate.

But when an innocent third-party is involved, a child, do the same rules apply?  I submit that advocacy is only legitimate when it seeks the truth, to maximize sunshine, and to hide nothing.

I cannot help but wonder where Glen Greenwald would stand on this question.  I know he would violently (or perhaps non-violently, but vehemently) oppose compelling attorneys to reveal-client secrets in order to obtain convictions for terrorism—he is already on the record for this.  But those who defend American victims of denial of due process are presumably, at least in large part, defending people who are “actually innocent” of terrorist acts even though they may be “guilty” of hating America, and all that America has come to stand for, which is, after all, a gigantic culture of hypocrisy and lies.

Anthropological linguistics teach us that language is symbolic communication and that symbols are inherently abstract and hence, by definition, removed from the “reality” they describe.  So all language and all expression requires and demands deception of a sort: but is the purpose of law and litigation to protect the guilty or the innocent, and to maximize truth or to protect lies.  Lawyers seem to exist, in large part, to maximize protection for the guilty and to secure lies their “rightful place in the domination of world history”.

And in closing, I categorically deny that this is “sour grapes” on my part. I am NOT actually thinking about how the Austin, Texas based Admissions Committee of Western District of Texas in 1997-8 protected the one or two carefully selected and manufactured witnesses who testified in private, behind closed doors, with no recordings or transcripts, only committee summaries, from any cross-examination by me or my attorneys throughout the “Disciplinary Procedures” ordered by Judge James R. Nowlin against me. Or actually, they were protected from cross-examination until their testimony had been sufficiently rehearsed to be credible.  This was indeed an example of secrecy guaranteeing the efficacy of lies, but it goes back much farther than that.

 Rather, it is in memory of a Great-Grandfather of mine, known as “Judge Benny” who was a Louisiana Judge of impeccable albeit local reputation in Shreveport and Natchitoches who (at least according to family legend) had a knitted or crocheted and framed textile on the wall of his chambers which said, in a grand Louisiana tradition of cynicism, “Dead lawyers Lie Still.”

***It is Utu’s Akkadian-Speaking Eastern Semitic Successor Shamash who greets the Babylonian King Hammurabi and hands him the sacred laws, or pronouncement of laws, atop the Stela removed from Susa to Paris and now resident in the Louvre in Paris (with exact replicas at the Oriental Institute at the University of Chicago and the magnificent Pergamon Museum in Berlin).  The Greek Apollo, tragically, acquired very few of the characteristics of  the Near Eastern Sun God of Justice—Apollo was more known for his sarcastic gifts mixed with curses (e.g. Cassandra’s true power of prophecy coupled with universally inaccurate disbelief) and any real justice or fairness.

March 23—THE DATE to Remember Patrick Henry in 1775, but today ( March 23 2013) it’s been 30 Years Since Ronald W. Reagan’s Star Wars, 15 Years since James Cameron “I’m King of the World” announcement after winning Oscar for Titanic…in 1945 the British “Black Watch” Crossed the Rhein….in 1925 Tennessee outlawed the teaching of Evolution

Of all these events in the 20th Century, I remember the last two most clearly.  While Ronald Reagan’s “StarWars” Speech in 1983 was inspiring and uplifting (even as I listened to it over the one and only well-functioning TV then extant in the general neighborhood of Chichén Itzá, Yucatán in the lobby of the Hotel Mayaland, though I was living across the street at Edward H. Thompson’s old Hacienda….), James Cameron’s “I’m King of the World” arrogance has always stuck in my mind as the single most obnoxious Academy Award acceptance speech I ever was sufficiently unfortunate as to have listened to (and I listened to that one from Casa del Mar on Seawall & 60th in Galveston, Texas).  Now, fortunately, Cameron’s obnoxious speech never really hurt anybody, no matter how much of an anal orifice he proved himself to be.

But, by contrast, Ronald W. Reagan’s Star Wars (aka “Strategic Defense Initiative”) could be called the end of even the MYTH of limited constitutional government in the United States.  Reagan on this date announced, authorized, initiated, and launched the most TRULY offensive program of Corporate Welfare in World History, without real immediate consequence but VERY intimidating to the rest of the world.  The Strategic Defense Initiative gave Reagan the excuse all neocons wanted to turn his platform of fiscal responsibility and limited government on its head.  The greatest irony of Star Wars was that it was such an impractical, impossibly theoretical plan for military development, that the primary beneficiaries were University Communities—where billions and billions in research money were poured into the neighborhoods of places like Harvard University, University of California at Berkeley, the University of Texas, and Stanford, so that (in effect) Reagan bribed all the academics who normally and nominally would have opposed him to support his excesses of spending and enlarging the U.S. Government through the most reckless economic programs ever in World History…. Star Wars, gave a huge boost to the “peri-academic” research communities around Boston Loop 128, Silicon Valley, and along the unimaginatively renamed “Research Boulevard” (Highway 183) in Austin, all of which might have remained stunted or even stillborn without Reagan (the great enemy of Welfare for the Poor) granting open ended credit as welfare to the Rich….

On March 23 in 1919—two major events took place which would shape the 20th Century: the Bolshevik (Soviet Communist) Central Committee or Politburo formed in Moscow, while on the same day Benito Mussolini organized the Fascist Party in Milan, Italy and took the reigns as its leader.  

As the memorial of “days that will live in infamy” goes, those were petty benign compared with 30 years earlier when U.S. President Benjamin Harrison opened up Oklahoma to the “Sooners” who lined up at the state borders and raced to stake their claims, thereby closing “the last frontier” in the lower 48 states anyhow (and obliterating the last of even the very modest concessions to the dispossessed Five Civilized Tribes of the American South, 55 years after the Trail of Tears from Georgia & Alabama through Mississippi and Arkansas…. or 1868 when the University of California at Berkeley was founded…. (ok, maybe that date wasn’t all THAT infamous…. but Berkeley for a while was certainly the center of that great Countercultural movement which took place in the 1960s…. from which America and the World have never really recovered….). 

March 23 was a great day in Streetcar history (I’m writing this while seated by the window at the Trolley Stop Café at 1923 St. Charles Avenue in New Orleans 70130).  In 1937 the Los Angeles Railway Co. started using PCC Streetcars (Presidents’ Conference Committee, replacing the famous old “Red and Yellow Cars” which once defined the Southern California landscape, from the time of Henry E. Huntingdon in 1901—-the LA Railway Co. finally went out of existence in 1958….in the wake of the ecologically and socially disastrous triumph of General Motors and the “car culture”). 

But forty years before Huntingdon’s trains started running in Los Angeles, in 1861, London began running its legendary tramcars, designed by the appropriately named “Mr. Train” of New York…. by some transportation history coincidence in 1922 the first airplane landed at the U.S. Capitol in Washington, D.C., while the streetcar itself was patented on this date in 1858 by E.A. Gardner of Philadelphia—the first U.S. Patent ever was issued was granted on this date to Joseph G. Pierson for a Riveting Machine….

In 1806 March 23 was the date when Lewis & Clark arrived on the Pacific Coast, the final goal of their epic voyage which began two years earlier in Saint Louis….

On March 23, 1808, Joseph Bonaparte, Napoleon’s brother, became King of Spain—the Bonapartist dynasty just didn’t last very long, especially in Spain….it was a dud….for better or for worst…

But from the standpoint of this Blog, of Deo Vindice and Tierra Limpia, the most important March 23 in world history was surely 1775, when Patrick Henry declared “Give me Liberty or Give me Death” at Saint John’s Church in Richmond, Virginia. 

In terms of musical culture, the highlight of this date was in 1743 when Georg Friedrich Handel’s Messiah premiered in London (a second “premier”—the original performance having been in Dublin, Ireland….).  Handel is an inspiration to those of us who aspire to be “late bloomers” in life.  In 1743 Handel was 58, five years older than I am now, having been born on 23 February 1685, with only 16 years left to his life (he died on 14 April 1759).  To me, Handel’s Messiah is the most inspiring major “operatic” kunstwerk/work of music prior to Wagner’s first “Wagnerian” opera Der Fliegende Hollander which premiered a century later (in Dresden in 1843), even if Handel’s was not “gesammt”.   As magnificent, innovative, and stirring as Mozart’s Magic Flute and Don Giovanni surely are, or Beethoven’s symphonies, I think that a real connexion can be made between the compositionally epic scale of the Messiah and Der Ring des Niebelungen, for example, or Wagner’s Grail operas…(Lohengrin, Tannhauser, Tristan und Isolde and Parsifal).

Are the National (or Global?) Puppeteer’s Trying to Push us into “Civil War”? In the First American “Civil War” the Original Constitution and Spirit of the Land of the Free was mortally wounded in the name of freeing the slaves. Are we now facing a Second “Civil War” in which (in the name of health, safety, and welfare) we will all become slaves?

An Australian pen-named “Max Igan” from Queensland has produced a video or series of videos with the purpose of arguing that Sandy Hook, the Aurora “Batman” Shooting, and other related events are not merely a staged series of propaganda attacks on the Second Amendment, but a provocation of the “alternative” or “truther” minority movement to engage in violent confrontations which could be characterized as “civil war” necessitating, perhaps, the imposition of martial law.

(Sidebar: I have often written that it is both an insult and a travesty to call the war of 1861-1865 a “Civil War”—although you COULD call the period of Reconstruction after 1865 a “Civil War” in some if not all parts of the South—but for purposes of introducing Max Igan’s ideas, this particular quibble holds but little relevance)

I find his argument cool and persuasive and devoid of some of the sensationalist and fanciful attacks on the government which lead some to posit truly “other worldly” explanations for the current transformations in the status quo.  

I particularly like Igan’s use of the terminology of “Trust” and “Breach of Trust” to describe the relationship between the government and the people.  A “False Trust” of course lies at the heart of the U.S. Welfare State—the unfunded, empty trust of government “out of thin air” securities which constitute the “Social Security Trust Fund.”

In this video, Igan proposes that the release of highly suspicious, obviously fraudulent material in relationship to the Sandy Hook shooting in Newton, Connecticut, was designed (basically) to drive already angry people over the edge:

http://unifiedserenity.wordpress.com/2013/02/15/planned-american-civil-war/

I have been writing very little these past two months as I take classes  at my old Alma Mater of Tulane and try to improve my somewhat old and aging mind.  The “Unified Serenity” site carries a lot of very disturbing videos, but I find Igan basically focused on the “real world” and the “contradictions inherent in all things” without  any dependent reference to occult mythology or ancient symbolism.  

The interpretation of the use of ancient iconography for modern messages in 

http://unifiedserenity.wordpress.com/2013/02/17/more-proof-than-needed-to-show-the-final-plan/

is just too much for me, although I understand and appreciate that the methodology of tracing hermeneutic images and metaphors is neither significantly worse (nor significantly better) than the academic program advanced by late great Linda Schele (University of Southern Alabama during the 1970s, thereafter University of Texas at Austin until her untimely death from cancer), her students, and others during the 1980s and 1990s relating to the decipherment of Maya hieroglyphics and the interpretation of ancient Maya (and Mexican and Central American) society.  

“Schele Youth” as I used to call them engaged in some fairly fanciful comparisons and drawing of lines—but it was all part of the process of trying to discover the truth about ancient society, and competing conspiracy theories about modern society (and last year, of course, during the countdown to December 21, 2012, we saw the great conversion of Schele-esque thinking with new age mysticism and alien-abduction conspiracy theories).

The Academic exercise known as “Deconstruction”, especially “Post-Modern Hermeneutic Deconstruction” is fundamentally identical in logic to what is called “Conspiracy Theory” in popular and political culture.  I’m not sure that’s a criticism of either academic deconstruction or post-modern Popular and Political conspiracy theories—it’s just a fact that the use of fuzzy logic and fuzzier images of images (icons, symbols) juxtaposed without regard to time and space is very similar—and such juxtapositions may or may not reflect real patterns.  Somewhere in one of these videos is a series of words “Easter/Eostre/Astarte/Ishtar/Ashtaroth” which would seem to be “the mother of all false etymologies” and irrelevant to almost absolutely everything.  I firmly believe 

March 6, 2011—Remember the Alamo! (and Goliad too!)

What more can anyone say?  “Remember the Alamo and Goliad too!” My grandparents Helen and Alphonse Meyer took me to visit the Alamo as almost the first thing to do in Texas when I arrived to live with them in Dallas, Texas after my parents split up.  This move was the first extremely strange transition in my life: my maternal grandmother Helen and her butler named Kermit went to pick me up and take me from my parents, whom my grandparents considered to be neglecting me.   This was in 1966, long before the State of Texas made its is business to interfere in every possible event in every family’s life.  And as unorthodox as this method of making child-custody transfer might sound to the modern reader, it might possibly have been the case that my parents were in fact neglecting me because my mother only showed up in Dallas quite a bit later, not having noticed my absence for sometime.  Anyhow, all of this happened the summer after I turned six.

And so it was then that “Remember the Alamo” became the first “Patriotic Slogan” I ever remember learning.  I obviously had already learned “God Save the Queen” first, but I was very young and don’t remember actually learning that particular salute.  But I do remember my grandparents teaching me to Cheer outloud “Remember the Alamo” although I’m not sure where I was supposed to use this cheer or to whom I was supposed to address it.  I recall my grandfather, “Al”, stopped the family at some particularly significant place around the Alamo and led us in a private family prayer for the fallen heroes.

Though himself the grandson of a British peer of the realm, my grandfather was born in Galveston and steeped in Texas history and patriotism. In his opinion, he insisted it was just as important, if not more so, to remember Colonel Fannin and the March 27 massacre at Goliad as it was to remember the Alamo, because more men died at Goliad, and they died more brutally, having been executed in cold blood.  So this initial tour of South Texas in 1966 also included a trip to Goliad and finally to the San Jacinto Battlefield and the Battleship Texas.

But unlike William Barret Travis’ “I am besieged…I have sustained continual Bombardment & cannonade for 24 hours and have not lost a man….I shall never surrender or retreat” February 24, 1836 letter from the Alamo, Colonel Fannin had left no eloquent written testimonial to pass down and post on the library wall.  Nor have dozens of movies been made about Fannin and Goliad, certainly nothing like John Wayne’s “The Alamo“.  This great mythical movie (historians say not a single scene in the picture can be directly related to any document-based “fact”) was completed and released the year I was born in Texas (1960) on October 24, which just happened to be the day my parents arrived in London on the Queen Mary.  This particular cinematic extravaganza just happened to have been made in Texas ONLY over John Wayne’s efforts and objections.

Happy Shahan was a rancher in southern Texas [Wayne’s team constructed an “Alamo Village” near Brackettville in Kinney County, on the old “Camino Real” between San Antonio and El Paso, just a few miles from the Rio Grande and Mexican Border]. ….  [Shahan’s] big break came when he secured The Alamo (1960).  John Wayne had originally decided to make the film in Mexico where he owned land. However, it quickly became apparent he would face a boycott from the Daughters of the Republic and it was politically expedient to make the film in Texas (Rothel, 1990: 13-15).  http://www.buseco.monash.edu.au/mgt/research/working-papers/2006/wp36-06.pdf

It is one of those passing ironies of the interaction of history and myth that Wayne wanted and originally planned to film his Epic of Texas Independence in the State of Durango, Mexico, which to Wayne at least and the other producers looked much more like Texas “should” have looked in 1836 than Texas in recent times ever could have looked.  John Wayne also owned a ranch in Durango and made several other films there.  The point is that the reenactment of history is a matter of politically powerful myth—and apparently the Daughters of the Republic of Texas believed that to make a movie about the Alamo in Mexico would somehow be “taboo”—even though Wayne certainly would have been right in pointing out that, of course, when the Battle of the Alamo was fought, and for the three hundred years preceding the siege, Texas had been politically and legally defined (in European law and cartography at least) as part of Mexico—first as part of the the Viceroyalty of New Spain, then as part of the Empire and finally the Republic of Mexico).

There is some unfortunate documentation in the record of diaries left by certain Mexican officers that Davie Crockett in particular and other nearly legendary heroes may not have died quite as heroically as portrayed in the movies, but the simple truth is that the Texas Revolution started to defend the Mexican Constitution of 1823, and the defenders of the Alamo flew a flag to prove that point.  In 1836 there was no conflict between Anglo and Hispanic (Mexican) Creoles in Texas—there was only a conflict between dictatorship and Democratic-Republican Government.  Any modern attempt to recast the Texas revolution as an Anglo-Hispanic race-oriented dispute have to deal with the fact that the Texas Declaration of Independence was written by the Tecoh, Yucatan-born Mexican Statesman Ernesto de Zavala and that Texas and Yucatan both separated from Santa Ana’s Mexico and formed an independent alliance—and although both Yucatan and Texas applied for U.S. Statehood, somewhat tragically, only Texas was admitted.  Yucatan Governor Justo Sierra O’Reilly made the mistake of trying to seek admission for Yucatan as a “free” state—despite the existence of a Plantation economy throughout the Peninsula—and the South at the point relied much too heavily on the Missouri Compromise of 1820 *(later declared unconstitutional in Scott v. Sanford, 1857) and did not wish to allow “free” states both south and north of the Dixie Heartland.  The Yucatan Peninsula would have made a fine addition to the United States, and the Yucatec Creoles and Maya an amazing enrichment of the United States population (both White and Native American).   It is easy to see how the outcome of the war of 1861-65 would have been different, if it had happened at all, had Yucatan been part of the Confederacy….instead of the most pro-Imperial province of the Hapsburg Emperor Maxmillian’s shortlived “Imperio Mexicano”.

Ernesto Zavala’s house in Merida still bears a plaque celebrating the historical contacts between Texas and Yucatan and is preserved as a historic landmark.  In Texas, there is not only a “Zavala” County but also a building on the Texas State Capitol grounds, just southeast of the South Facing domed statehouse, named after him, the Zavala building—it is the State Archive and Historical Records building.  During the Short-Lived Republic of Yucatan, which declared its independence (without bloodshed) in 1838, two years after Texas, Texas and Yucatan jointly developed a very small Naval force to patrol the Gulf of Mexico between Galveston and Progresso.

Justo Sierra O’Reilly’s travel to Washington applying for admission to the Union is the subject of quite a bit of writing in Mexico, and he is a controversial figure in that he was seeking (among other things) a U.S. alliance against the Maya uprising known as “The Caste War of Yucatan”.  Yucatan’s separatism from Mexico preceded the U.S. War with Mexico in 1846-48, but Justo Sierra O’Reilly’s interest in seeing Yucatan admitted continued even after the treaty of Guadalupe-Hidalgo confirmed the transfer of California, Texas, New Mexico, what is now Arizona, Nevada, and Utah to the United States in 1848.  Yucatan was officially neutral in the war with the United States but many in Sierra O’Reilly’s position supported full annexation and integration, even while the stars and stripes flew over Chapultepec Castle under the immediate intendency and command of one Colonel Robert E. Lee, nephew of a signer of the Declaration of Independence in 1776.  Some Mexicans regard Sierra O’Reilly as a traitor like Benedict Arnold or Aaron Burr in the U.S., but those who fly the (suppressed) flag of the independent Republic of Yucatan regard him as a hero.  Justo Sierra O’Reilly wrote a very disappointed “Impresiones de un Viaje a los Estados Unidos e Canada” which used to be and probably still is in print in Yucatan, although I haven’t noticed it on the bookstore shelves in recent years.   Yucatan’s separatist tendencies survived a long time after O’Reilly.  Empress Carlotta, even in her madness later in life, recalled the especially warm welcome she and her ill-fated husband received in Yucatan, and there was an active separatist movement in Yucatan as late as the 1960s.

One could say that the de facto annexation of Cancun and the East Coast of Quintana Roo as an American colony (at least during Spring break, but for most of the winter tourist season) starting in 1971 was the final death blow to Yucatec separatism—in that one can now hear significantly more English spoken on the streets and beaches of Cancun than one can on the streets of Miami or Miami Beach…

All the world’s a stage, and all the men and women merely players: but on that stage, are courtroom dramas sometimes pre-scripted to produce results and/or social effects? Do these scripts negate due process of law? A Northern California Example.

In the eight years since AAMES Vice-President Deborah S. Gershon in Los Angeles explained to me that AAMES loans could not be modified because they did not belong to AAMES…. strike that, in the 17 years since I first participated in the preparation of an SEC-acceptable registration statement for an MBO (Mortgage Backed Obligation, actually a Mortgage Bundled-Bond, in that case) IPO on Wall Street at Cadwalader, Wickersham, & Taft, I have been almost obsessed with trying to understand and undo the evil caused by securitized mortgages.  It’s a lonely obsession, like so many of my interests: from Wagnerian Opera, Gilbert & Sullivan’s operettas, Tom Lehrer’s and Weird Al Yankovich’s “comic pop-cultural folklore”, to the reconstruction of Proto-Indo-European Language, Culture, and Mythology, the calibration of the Maya and Christian calendars by and through archaeological stratigraphy and ceramic seriation, the comparative structural analysis of dual, tripartite, and quadripartite forms of religious and social organization, and then over to the comparative American graveyard organization and iconography of Colonial New England and the South, especially New Orleans, the detailed history of the Oracle at Delphi, the best approximation of Moses’ route through the Sinai Peninsula in Exodus. But of all my interests and obsessions, only securitized mortgages have become not merely a national but a worldwide crisis and obsession as well.   Since my happy days as a young (or at least a much younger) judicial extern clerk for Stephen Reinhardt (Ninth Circuit, Los Angeles) and later a judicial law clerk for Kenneth L. Ryskamp (Southern District of Florida, Miami & West Palm Beach), on the opposite coasts of America, since those days when I believed that Federal judges all worked late hours into the morning with their clerks sifting through pleadings and motions and agonized over the proper disposition of cases, never “pre-judged” anything, and that federal judges in particular were basically among the hardest working and most honorable members of society at large, never mind the much maligned legal profession, I have learned a lot and become very cynical.

Sadly, I have to say that I repeatedly, and with increasing frequency, see evidence that at least some federal judges either manipulate or fix cases, and that the putatively adversarial attorneys may sometimes participate in this process.   I have neither the time nor the energy to review all the cases where I have suspected this, except that I saw the process directly for the first time in September 1997 in Austin, Texas, when I saw Judge James R. Nowlin take charge of a case (ALL sides), primarily for the purpose of attacking and ultimately destroying me (well, actually, my “ordinary” legal career: which by ending that very ordinary phase of my life began the “extraordinary” phase in which I have been living ever since).  But I’ve seen some evidence of staging and restructuring cases many times since, though no one has ever been quite as outrageously blatant about it as Judge James R. Nowlin of the Western District of Texas (that was one for the Guinness Book of World Records), until perhaps right now, September 2010, in the Northern District of California.

A couple of weeks ago, I became aware that a respected an experienced attorney by the name of Michael Pines had filed a truly extraordinary lawsuit against the foreclosure and eviction consequences against the securitization of mortgages, and in particular against one marvelously slimy fellow by the name of Steven D. Silverstein who operates a rather vicious shark tank out of Tustin, Orange County, California.  Michael Pines’ complaint was, frankly, music to my ears: as eloquent as Wagner while as socially apt, “right on the mark” and stinging as the comedies of Gilbert & Sullivan, or the satires of Tom Lehrer and “Weird Al.”  Everything that Michael Pines said was true, or at least reflected MY version of truth and reality to a very reassuring degree: Michael T Pines’ NDCA Complaint for FDCPA-Wrongful Foreclosure 10-02622 Class Action

Finally, a non-disbarred, currently licensed attorney with community respectability, standing had become so thoroughly acquainted with the truth as even to go record as giving CLE Courses to other lawyers on the topic, see e.g.: http://www.free-press-release.com/news-securitization-in-litigation-workshop-6hrs-mcle-michael-t-pines-esq-certified-forensic-loan-auditors-llc- 1268337159.html

Surely a lawyer like this knows at least as much as a pathetic disbarred attorney such as myself would know.  Inception of a major lawsuit, especially a class action, means that you must design your litigation according to a very careful strategy, frame issues to match your defendants, and you must thoroughly research every topic prior to launching litigation.  Above all, before you file your complaint, you must anticipate vigorous and violent opposition—especially if you’re suing other lawyers, but even if you’re “ONLY” suing certain major banks and loan servicing companies in the largest financial industry in the WORLD in a state (California) whose, by itself, would rank right after that of France and just above Italy’s if California were a separate and independent nation, apart from the rest of the US.  Anyone who goes into Federal Court knows that the first thing to expect is the ALMOST inevitable 12(b)(6) Motion.  Few and far between are the cases where anyone just files an “answer” in Federal Court, when Federal judges, even the good ones, LOVE to throw out cases without allowing a jury trial if they possibly can, because all Federal judges are “judged” and rated by their “case statistics” which rewards a LOW case load (which requires less work) than a HIGH case load (conscientious management of which would require MUCH more work).   Congress has built in some VERY perverse incentives for Federal Judges but that is, as they say, a “Political Question” which we need not address here.

SO how can it be that Michael T. Pines, a distinguished lawyer known for speaking on this topic, had not filed (by September 2010) even a single answer to the motions to dismiss his complaint filed in June, 2010?  CAND-ECF-10-02622 Michael T Pines v Silverstein Docket 09-19-2010 Michael T. Pines did the almost unthinkable: he filed and served a major, complex lawsuit in his special field of expertise and advocacy and then, faced with the totally predictable barrage of motions to dismiss and for sanctions, never filed any responses and finally, on September 21, 2010, VOLUNTARILY DISMISSED HIS CASE.  09-21-2010–PINES AND ASSOCIATES—Notice of Voluntary Dismissal.  The Notice provides no explanation whatsoever why Plaintiffs’ Counsel so utterly and completely failed to file any response or contest to the Defendants’ Motions to Dismiss, but only lamely “advised the court:”

2. Further investigation is occurring and will be helpful.

3. Many new party defendants need to be added.

4. The case may be re-filed in a court where other class actions are pending as this

case is related to other similar actions not only in California, but in Florida,

New York, and Seattle.

5. In an attempt to further conceal their wrongful conduct, with the exception of a

few defendants, no demand for defense was made to insurance carriers and

plaintiffs wish to make sure this occurs.

6. If the case is re-filed in this court, this action will be brought to the attention of

the court so it can be reassigned here if the court desires such.

Steven D. Silverstein’s lawyer Larry Rothman responded  09-27-2010 10-cv-02622-RS Case Status Report in a more mild-mannered and civilized way than I would have thought possible, because Larry Rothman is nothing if not a fairly consistent shark in the tradition of his client (and mentor?) Silverstein—and yet Rothman pounced on 09-22-2010 THE VERY DAY AFTER Michael T. Pines’ Notice of Voluntary Dismissal and demanded that jurisdiction to impose sanctions be retained.  Judge Seeborg of the Northern District could do nothing other than comply with Rothman’s request: 09-27-2010—10-2622 McComas order re pending motions—Rule 11 Sanctions Remain.

This story is clearly not yet “over”—it remains to be seen what Judge Seeborg will do about the motions for sanctions and the administration or implementation of Rothman’s California “anti-Slapp” motion in Federal Court.  (The idea that Silverstein’s use of the California Superior Courts of Limited Jurisdiction [solely to eviscerate the rights and lives of hundreds of thousands of Californians] could be protected against a “Suit to Limit Access to Public Process” [a “SLAPP” is usually conceived of as a harassing lawsuit designed for no purpose except to silence environmentalists or civil rights advocates, or historic or coastal neighborhood preservations—NOT as a vehicle to insulate criminals like Silverstein from very meritorious lawsuits] is beyond preposterous and downright offensive.   I believe and have submitted in two lawsuits of my own that California Anti-SLAPP legislation is the “mother of all First Amendment Constitutional Violations”—even more reprehensible for its vagueness and obviously realized potential for overbreadth than the “Vexatious Litigant” index which I can only imagine Silverstein would like to have me registered on).

It also remains to be seen whether Michael T. Pines actually WILL refile his class action against Silverstein and his cronies and seriously litigate the Complaint once he DOES file it again.

In the meantime, Michael T. Pines has voluntarily dismissed his very fine complaint without even attempting to defend it.  And I have never seen anything this suspicious in my life, except for Judge Nowlin’s conduct towards me in September 1997 [footnote/sidebar: it was a civil case, but Judge Nowlin appointed a very expensive downtown Austin lawyer, a former law clerk of his, to represent the crook I was suing as Defendant, who was proceeding pro se —when I say “crook” I mean Donald Richmond was a forger, an interstate racketeer in real estate before it was even fashionable, and we had the certificate from the North Dakota Secretary of State confirming that he had forged a notary seal—and then he arranged to have me fired as counsel for the Plaintiff by strong-arming my housekeeper into giving outrageously and obviously false testimony against me, and on that occasion expressed his gratitude in open Court, on the record, to her and anyone else who would assist him in procuring evidence leading to my disbarment…..]

I submit that this all looks just a little bit too STAGED to me.   Even if it were true, as Michael T. Pines so weakly claims that:

1. Counsel is working with several agencies including the State Of California to

coordinate proceedings against named defendants and others (and criminal proceedings in other states).

2. Further investigation is occurring and will be helpful.

3. Many new party defendants need to be added.

4. The case may be re-filed in a court where other class actions are pending as this

case is related to other similar actions not only in California, but in Florida,

New York, and Seattle.

These facts SIMPLY do not excuse Michael T. Pines failure even to defend himself for filing the Complaint in any way, shape or form.  (Aside from submitting the Complaint, Pines had submitted a TRO and motion for reconsideration of denial of TRO, and no other substantive papers in the case WHATSOEVER).

And frankly, all of it would be pretty inconclusive and not nearly so suspicious if it were not for the judgment obtained in the California Attorney General’s case against a certain Mitchell Roth in Los Angeles in August of this year.   I wrote a critical letter to the Attorney General immediately after learning of the Mitchell Roth judgment, saying that I did not believe that the Attorney General had acted in the best interests of the people of California in attacking Mitchell Roth’s abortive crusade against non-judicial foreclosures and evictions.  CEL to EDMUND G BROWN CAL AG 08-26-2010.  I feared then and still fear that the end result as far as the public is concerned will be that everyone who pushes the “securitized note” issue, as a defense to wrongful foreclosure and the evictions that follow therefrom will be lumped with “the scammers” and the filers of frivolous lawsuits, such as Roth and, I’m going to predict, Michael T. Pines.  I note in the attorney general’s summary of Roth’s conduct the disturbing sentence: “Roth filed lawsuits on behalf of homeowners, pushing a novel legal argument that a borrower’s loan could be deemed invalid because the mortgages had been sold so many times on Wall Street that the lender could not demonstrate who owned it.” Isn’t THIS suit, by the Attorney General of the State of California, the ultimate “SLAPP” in the face to the movement of which I am apart, the advocacy in which I believe and have fought ever since it effectively cost me my high-paying, high-prestige job at the (they claim) oldest lawfirm in the United States (allegedly traceable back to a law office founded in lower Manhattan near the battery in 1792).

However, even more suspicious and odd, California Attorney General Edmund G. Brown had made precisely the same claim against Mitchell Roth as the demonstrable reasons for the voluntary dismissal of Plaintiffs’ case in the NDCA: “Once the lawsuit was filed, Roth did next to nothing to advance the case and often failed to make required court filings, respond to legal motions, comply with court deadlines or appear at court hearings.”http://ag.ca.gov/newsalerts/release.php?id=1979

Honestly, it just doesn’t get much more suspiciously coincidental than this: on or about August 12, 2010, the Attorney General enters into a consent judgment with Mitchell Roth preventing Mitchell Roth from “pushing” his novel legal argument that a borrower’s loan could be deemed invalid because the mortgages had been sold so many times on Wall Street that the lender could not demonstrate who owned it”—Mitchell Roth’s alleged “M.O.” was to file lawsuits and then never do anything else about it.

Slightly over a month later, on or about September 21, 2010, Michael T. Pines, supposedly one of the leading advocates AGAINST SECURITIZED MORTGAGES, voluntarily dismisses his very strong complaint against wrongful foreclosures, after having identified the issues correctly, named all the right defendants, after initiating a lawsuit and never filing any other papers or attempting even taking steps towards the serious prosecution of the lawsuit, (i.e. (without ever answering the Defendants’ Motions to Dismiss or defending his complaint in any way) .  (Perhaps it is significant that Pines’ Complaint named too many plaintiffs and defendents to be practically combined into a single suit, especially one seeking class certification, where “identity of injury and identity of nature of causation of injury” must be proven, but that’s a quibble about strategy).

Two nearly identical case histories, flawed legal strategies, associated with the same legal issue, both leading to potential legal sanctions or stigmatization of the very meritorious legal issues involved in attacking the securitization of home mortgages as the direct and proximate and therefore legal cause of the present mortgage foreclosure crisis.

The end result of both the stories of Mitchell Roth and Michael T. Pines’ case histories, as of Tuesday, September 28, 2010, is that two “seasoned” lawyers in the State of California who wanted to push that self-same “Novel Argument” about securitization leading to unenforceability of mortgages have both bit the dust without adequately developing or examining the legal theories or factual evidence which could be marshaled in favor and support of either Roth’s Complaint or Pines’ Complaint.  This is going to lead to a lot of “See, I told you so” comments which those trying to dissuade homeowners from fighting foreclosure on this issue will now be able to use.   Litigation on the scale of the Pines’ now voluntarily dismissed complaint or (I assume, without ever having looked at an example) Roth’s Complaint supposedly filed (???) 2,000 times without a single genuine litigation is expensive and difficult, and scares away even many serious people, but that is because it must be fought against all odds against such tough enemies—the international banking & finance industry, its attorneys, and its servicers.

In other words, I charge, without any inside knowledge, that Mitchell Roth’s cases and Michael Pines’ case were both staged, fraudulent situations specifically staged to discredit and destroy the causes which I so passionately support: the abolition of securitized mortgages and the modification of the foreclosure and eviction laws in the state of California and elsewhere, especially in those Western U.S.A. states which tend to slavishly copy California Codes, by inertia and gravity, as physical factors relating to size and proximity, rather than virtue or success of theoretical arguments.

And that, therein, is the biggest problem.  In almost all pro se complaints, the systems-loyal state and federal judges all have an easy time throwing out the desperate homeowners who demand to see the note or ask how their property can be taken from them by a party who appears to have no relationship to them or their original mortgage application and promissory note whatsoever.

The continuing lack of argument and exposition of evidence and theories is perhaps the most devastating consequence of the Mitchell Roth judgment and the Michael T. Pines’ voluntary dismissal (with continued exposure to punitive sanctions under both Rule 11 of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure and the ABSURD California “Anti-SLAPP” Motion filed by Rothman for Silverstein).

“Due Process” never occurs on stage.  It is true that the language used to describe and explain legal “representation” and thespian performance is sometimes eerily similar:  the lawyer “acts on behalf” of another by “representing him” as accurately as possible in his “presentation” to the Court.   An actor, like an attorney in court, is to be judged on the “quality” or “accuracy” of his representation of both the character and the “original intent” of the author of the movie, the play, the book (before being made into a movie or play), or of the statutory and constitutional provisions underlying the lawsuit brought to be “put on” in Court—under the best of circumstances to a small, non-paying, poorly paid, “captive” audience of 12, and more often, to an even smaller audience of one judge, one or two bailiffs or courtroom deputies, and one-or-two law clerks.

Meaningful argument, substantial dialogue or “Due Process” on stage is impossible, except of course in completely “ad libbed” dramas (where no preset script is to be followed), because all the arguments and outcomes are normally predetermined (“Shear Madness” is a notable exception).

What aggravates so many Americans who get caught up in one or more aspects or elements of the litigation system in this country is how “pre-set” and “pre-determined” the outcome of all proceedings seems to be.  There is no room for open or free argument or debate—there is no “due process” for the free development of ideas or evidence—there are rote formulas and outcomes which in some courts seem totally fixed—the opposite of freedom.

In Florida for several years now I’ve been working intermittently with Dr. Kathy Garcia-Lawson on the question of why every divorce litigation must end in a divorce.   Why are there not multiple, possible outcomes, as unique as the individuals and families involved?  Why can one not question the “pre-fixed” outcome that all divorce proceedings must end in a divorce?   There is no such thing as a “not guilty” verdict.  As Kathy and others have said—every marriage is doomed once it goes to court—there are no pardons and no hung juries, every marriage must die.

Likewise, in California Unlawful Detainer Courts—the outcome is even more fixed.  In divorce court, there is at least some diversity of outcome with regard to who gets the house and who gets the house, the shares of Bristol-Myers-Squibb, the kids, the dog, the parakeet, and all those ancient plates inherited from one spouse’s great aunt who collected Royal Doulton (but whose eyesight was so bad in her old age that every set is hopelessly mismatched in the China cabinet).

In Unlawful Detainer Court, as in California non-judicial foreclosure, there is no diversity of outcome, and Judges have been known to tell defendants out right that only one outcome is possible—the homeowner must lose and be evicted.  Contractual defenses are not allowed.  Defects in property title are not allowed.  Violations of due process and allegations of fraud are not allowed—or if a good humored judge allows these arguments, the Plaintiff still wins, anyhow.

Accordingly, “due process”, has become meaningless in many American Courts: there is a “prix-fixe” menu of “notice and opportunity” whereby you have notice of some dire event—either your marriage is about to be torn apart or your home is about to be sold (and possession delivered) to the Mainland Chinese and/or Saudi Arabian investors who’ve been stalking your neighborhood or both.

“Due process” is ordinarily defined as “meaningful notice and reasonable opportunity to be heard” but even those qualifying words are extravagant compared to what’s really given in most American Courts of limited and/or specialized jurisdiction (i.e. Divorce/Family/Domestic Relations Courts or Courts of Limited Jurisdiction/Municipal Courts/Justice of the Peace Courts specializing in evictions/foreclosures).   The State of Florida is setting up special “foreclosure courts” just to speed the destruction of private property in that state along at a merry pace.

But then there are the real problems—where the Courts are of unlimited jurisdiction, like the Northern District of California—but a “show” is apparently planned and put on to discredit an idea.   A case is made up and then litigated in such a way that one side must lose.  It is exactly like fixing a boxing match or a baseball game so that the “gamblers” and “bookies” will be happy, or make money, or both.

When lawyers participate in the fixing of cases, they betray their clients and themselves, but they also betray the concept of due process and the constitutional meaning of the courts as a part of government.

When judges participate in the fixing of cases, well, it’s just too horrifying for words.

Did any of these happen either in the Mitchell Roth case in Los Angeles or the Michael Pines case in the Northern District of California?   Similar fact patterns, similar outcomes, identical legal-factual subject matter relating to the effect of securitized mortgages.

I think that “due process” should be redefined as meaningful dialogue concerning all facts and issues.  The Judges would be primarily responsible for enforcing the Court as an arena for such discussions.   Last year I was involved in an unfortunate case of ill-repute in Orange County wherein I worked with a lawyer who brought some very controversial claims of great national interest, and that lawyer then intentionally sabotaged her own claims on several levels by rushing the process, and then by ignoring it once she had a chance to get into court.  The judge granted this particular lawyer an extraordinary opportunity to correct some past mistakes, the attorney made more.  The judge then wrote an opinion outlining everything that this attorney needed to do to make her case and claims stronger, and the lawyer called the judge a traitor on the internet.  It was all just tragic and disgusting, because this one particular judge really DOES get that “meaningful dialogue” is at the heart of due process.  “Due process” is simply not satisfied by summary executions where the doomed defendant has a few words to say by way of complaint before his head is lopped off or he is thrown bodily out of his house.

The world goes faster and faster, and it is time to slow some things down.  Legal process, for instance, should NEVER be streamlined.  It should ALWAYS be slow and deliberate and give adequate opportunity for thought, reflection, and debate both on legal theories and evidence.   Above all, there must be no fixed or pre-determined outcomes.

I hope that Michael Pines did not intentionally “throw” his case by failing to answer the Defendants’ Motions to Dismiss, but I’d say it looks very suspicious.  I hope that there is nothing more than great  and random coincidence between the allegations made (and established by a consent judgment) against Mitchell Roth in Los Angeles and the obvious conduct of Michael Pines’ case in the Northern District of California.

Full and open debate and exposition of evidence is absolutely critical both to resolving important issues facing the country and for the future of the free rights and enforceability of contract and the maintenance of the right to keep and own private property.  In other words, due process, by which I mean “well-developed and meaningful dialogue” (i.e. dialectical reasoning and process) in the evaluation of petitions for redress of grievance concerning impairments of the rights to enforce and maintain obligations of contract, for the benefits of acquiring and maintaining ownership of private property, and the presentation of these arguments to juries, is key to the future of the United States of America, and there is some evidence that such dialectical debate and the adversarial process itself is being regularly subverted in these United States as we teeter on the verge of a major transformation in our country, as one economy, the “capitalist mode of production” gasps for air and tries to survive against creeping socialism and collectivism which deeply threatens our way of life.

In Plato’s Republic, Book VII, men are chained to a wall and never see the sunlight, and they believe that their shadowy reflections in the torchlight is the only reality of life, because they either never knew or have forgotten the sun and how the world looks by day.  We in America are chained in our caves by lack of due process in court, lack of full debate on important aspects of our lives, such as WHERE and HOW we live.  The judicial courts need to be a radiant source of light for all people to see evidence and theories concerning what is right and what is wrong, what is true and what is false, especially in the economy, especially in regard to the essential elements of life, such as food and shelter.