One of the biggest sources of grief for me as moderator and owner of Tips & Tricks springs from when I reject a post. After rejecting a post, I have been called a �Communist,� and a �censor�. I have been accused of keeping the �truth� from the group. Comments like these cause me to examine myself. I think about the time I left the group un-moderated while I attended the week long Feast of Tabernacles. When I returned I learned that group members had been flaming each other and that there had been a bunch of strife and the group had lost about a third of its members in one week. When I think about that week and it occurs to me that it is much better to have a moderated group.
Then I review the posts to other Yahoo groups I am involved in and see among those posts a bunch of spam that has nothing to do with law and group members using the group to send private messages to each other and again it occurs to me that it is much better to have a moderated group.
When I review the other law groups I am involved in and see that Tips & Tricks has passed them all with respect to number of members, again it occurs to me that it is much better to have a moderated group. Then I consider�for Tips & Tricks to become the largest law group, that has to mean that more people are staying than are leaving the group. To me what that means is that I must be doing more things right than I am wrong.
That brings me to the point of this post. Instead of thinking of myself as a �Communist� or a �censor�, I am now thinking of myself as an editor. As an editor, I have been taking some editorial control of the content on Tips & Tricks posts and as such, I have been drawing the line tighter on the posts I allow in two areas:
1) posts that draw conclusions without setting forth the facts or law that were relied upon to draw the conclusion;
2) What I have started to think of as dredging posts; posts in which the poster makes little or no investment into the writing of it but posts it in hopes that someone has already done the research they seek and will give it to them for free. Below is a post I recently rejected that serves as an example of both:
Do the Courts or the DOJ have a constitutional right to defend an
institution (IRS) foreign to the Constitution of the United States of
America? Can someone out there Please <sic> reply to this Question?
I rejected the above post saying, �When you re-post, I want you to include a couple paragraphs about what you already know about this. You have drawn a conclusion that IRS is "foreign to the Constitution of the United States". I want you to include both the reasoning and facts that caused you to arrive at this conclusion. You have drawn a conclusion that the DOJ (What are you doing using an acronym anyway? How are we supposed to know what DOJ is?) has a "constitutional right". I want you to include both the reasoning and facts that caused you to arrive at this conclusion. You have drawn a conclusion that the courts defend the IRS. I want you to include both the reasoning and facts that caused you to arrive at this conclusion. Bear Tips & Tricks�
As the editor of Tips & Tricks posts, here is what I want from posters who seek to stir things up or get some information for free. I want the poster to invest something in the post that results in the post being substantive. Please notice that the above post is a question containing conclusions that borders on the Socratic teaching method. It cannot be told from the post whether the poster is attempting to teach us something by asking the question, or, whether the poster if genuinely ignorant about the topic. I would consider the post to be substantive if the poster told us something like:
�I am in Federal Court right now on willful failure to file and I have been thinking about whether the US Attorney or the Dept. of Justice can represent the IRS. I was reading up on the history of the IRS and I cannot see where they were ever created as a matter of law. I did some research on the authority of the Dept. of Justice and I found a couple statutes, 28 USC ??? and 28 USC ??? that appear to say that they can represent anybody they want�but when I ran those statutes in the case law there were some cases that said they could not represent anybody they want but none of those were about the IRS. The judge is my case appears to be taking every opportunity to defend the IRS by�blah�blah, etc. Is there anybody else on the group that has taken this issue farther than this?�
I rejected another post for similar reasons. It went something like:
�How do I get a message to the group about unjust use of imminent domain in Youngstown Ohio?�
I replied in my rejection that I would allow his message when he put with it what research he had done and what tactics he was trying or thinking of trying. For some reason it just does not sit well with me to let people troll the group with posts that they invest nothing in for free legal research or for somebody to ride in on their white horse and save the day for free. Here�s another way to put it, if you are going to use Tips & Tricks to ask for free help with your legal problem, please ask in a post that includes some substance including what state you are in; some facts that we can think about; some research that you have done; some reasoning that you have already gone through; and the details of what you have already tried and the results.
Thanks for participating, Bear