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Re: [TheLandIsOurs] Freemen on the Land are “parasites” peddling “pseudolegal nonse nse” - ruling by Canadian judge

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  • Brendan Boal
    Whereas I fully acknowledge the shortcomings of the free man movement, they are, never the less, trying in their own slightly deluded way to resist the
    Message 1 of 6 , Dec 1, 2012
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      Whereas I fully acknowledge the shortcomings of the 'free man' movement, they are, never the less, trying in their own slightly deluded way to resist the system. As such, they are merely one of a number of well intentioned radical movements who think that 'this' or 'that' big idea is the answer to everything. By contrast, judges are unequivocally part of the system of privelige and oppression. Given that we are political radicals and not legal nerds, effusively promoting a judge's systematic dismemberment of the 'free men' is not something we should be doing on this list.


      From: "mark@..." <mark@...>
      To: TheLandisOurs@yahoogroups.com
      Sent: Friday, 30 November 2012, 21:49
      Subject: [TheLandIsOurs] Freemen on the Land are “parasites” peddling “pseudolegal nonsense” - ruling by Canadian judge


      Freemen on the Land are “parasites” peddling “pseudolegal nonsense”:
      Canadian judge fights back

      September 30, 2012 by Adam Wagner
      Ref:
      http://ukhumanrightsblog.com/2012/09/30/freemen-of-the-land-are-parasites-peddling-pseudolegal-nonsense-canadian-judge-fights-back/

      Meads v. Meads, 2012 ABQB 571 (Canadian) – read judgment / PDF

      Almost a year ago, I and some other legal bloggers wrote about a
      phenomenon known as the Freemen on the Land movement. I called the
      post Freemen of the dangerous nonsense, for that is exactly what the
      movement is, for those desperate enough to sign up to it. Now a
      Canadian judge has done many judges around the world a huge favour by
      exploding the movement’s ideas and leaders (or “gurus”) in a carefully
      referenced and forensic 192-page judgment, which should be read by
      anyone who has ever taken a passing interest in this issue, and
      certainly by any judge faced by a litigant attempting the arguments in
      court.

      The Freemen, alongside other groups with similar creeds, believe that
      if you change your name and deny the jurisdiction of the courts, you
      will be able to escape debt collectors, council tax and even criminal
      charges. As this member of the Occupy London movement, “commonly known
      as dom” wrote in guardian.co.uk (of all places) “if you don’t consent
      to be that “person”, you step outside the system“.

      As you may have guessed, this magical technique never works in the
      courts, but judges are often flummoxed when faced with the arguments,
      which are odd and in many ways risible. But what has been lacking is
      an authoritative, systematic judgment explaining, in detail, why that
      is. Until now, that is.

      Associate Chief Justice J.D. Rooke in the Court of Queen’s Bench of
      Alberta, Canada has published a ruling which deals exhaustively with
      the movements’ (there are a number of similar ones of varying
      craziness and scariness) history and arguments. He groups the various
      movements including the Freemen under the title “Organized Pseudolegal
      Commercial Argument litigants” (OPCA).

      Clearly, this is Judge who has had enough. After “[o]ver a decade of
      reported cases” which “have proven that the individual concepts
      advanced by OPCA litigants are invalid”,

          What remains is to categorize these schemes and concepts,
      identify global defects to simplify future response to variations of
      identified and invalid OPCA themes, and develop court procedures and
      sanctions for persons who adopt and advance these vexatious litigation
      strategies.

      His aim? To “uncover, expose, collate, and publish the tactics
      employed by the OPCA community, as a part of a process to eradicate
      the growing abuse that these litigants direct towards the justice and
      legal system we otherwise enjoy in Alberta and across Canada“. Good
      for him. Somebody needed to do it.

      The facts of this particular case are neither particularly interesting
      nor relevant to much of what the Judge says about the movements.
      Rather, he has used this relatively simple case where a litigant
      advanced Freemen-type arguments (“he was not Dennis Meads, the
      “corporate identity”, but was present as Dennis Larry Meads, “a flesh
      and blood man””) as a hook to hang a much wider exposition of the
      movement and its ideas.

      What the judgment says

      This is a long judgment, on the scale of a reasonably sized book. I
      will try my best to point out a few interesting bits but I would
      recommend that you read it. It is well set out and easy to follow. My
      numbered references are to paragraphs.

      Justice Rooke begins with a fascinating summary of the (surprisingly
      recent, only beginning in the last 20 years or so) history of
      movements such as the Freemen [172], Detaxers [169], Sovereign
      Men/Citizens [176], the Church of the Ecumenical Redemption
      International [183], and Moorish Law [189].

      One thing which is crucial to understand is that despite its
      anarchical tone, the movement has leaders or “gurus” who peddle its
      ideas to people. This is (you might have guessed) usually for a fee.
      The gurus focus on people who are at crunch points in their lives,
      such as those facing bankruptcy, foreclosure on their home or
      difficult litigation involving access to their children. So,

          an OPCA litigant in court is likely operating under instructions
      obtained from a commercial source, and has been told to conduct and
      frame his or her court activities in an unnatural, incorrect, and
      distorted context. The litigant is instructed to follow a script that
      is, in all probability illogical, and certainly contrary to law.

      Another interesting if unsettling aspect of the movements is the links
      to violence – see [175] (“Alarmingly, certain members of the
      Freeman-on-the-Land movement believe they have an unrestricted right
      to possess and use firearms.”) The danger is such that the FBI
      classifies the Sovereign Men, the chief US proponents of the ideas, as
      a domestic terrorist movement [181].

      How to spot them and what to do with them

      Justice Rooke goes on to explain how to spot OPCA litigants [from 203]
      by the odd way their documents are presented, their distinctive
      language [220], the obsolete, foreign, or typically otherwise
      irrelevant legislation they cite [228] such as our very own Magna
      Carta, Black’s Law Dictionary and their own birth certificate [230]
      and the claim that they are immune to the court’s jurisdiction (‘magic
      hats’) [302], of which there are many shapes and sizes. There are many
      other identifying features which have been discussed on this blog as
      well as others.

      Then the Judge goes on to explain why the arguments don’t work. I will
      not summarise the arguments. They are well laid out and referenced,
      reaching back to basic contract law to, for example, explain why the
      bizarre unilateral “agreements”  produced by the movements are
      illusory. Although Canada-focussed, this section could form the basis
      of any judicial response to the Freemen arguments on these shores.

      The oppressive, malignant entity

      The Judge also considers appropriate court strategies for dealing with
      OPCA arguments so as to minimise the wasting of the court’s and, as
      importantly, other litigants’ time in facing down the arguments. This
      should be of interest to the UK courts, which could also follow this
      guidance:

          I believe that a key element of an appropriate and successful
      response to OPCA litigation is that these proceedings be segregated,
      where possible, to minimize their effect on the innocent other parties
      involved. The suggested novel and conventional OPCA-specific court
      procedures (judicial review of suspect documents, show cause hearings,
      court security procedures, contempt, security for costs, elevated
      costs and damages, declaration of vexatious litigant status) may be a
      starting point for that objective.

          A second aspect is that innocent parties be indemnified for the
      legal costs associated with OPCA litigation. No, or little, cost
      should flow to a litigant who is abused by OPCA strategies.

      However, dealing with the cases systematically and efficiently will
      not be easy given the nature of the movement and the attitude of its
      adherents:

          That challenge is not assisted by guru indoctrination that court
      and state actors are parts of an oppressive, malignant entity, or at a
      minimum willing supporting characters of a dark, concealed design.
      Given that, to say that the typical OPCA litigant appears to be
      ‘tightly wound’ is an understatement.

      Importantly, the Judge also discusses the duties of lawyers [642] in
      such cases.

      Eighth circle of hell

      The Judge reserves his real ire not for the OPCA litigants or ideas,
      but its “gurus” who sell those ideas [669], for whom he quotes Dante’s
      Inferno:

          evil counsellors - those who used their position to advise others
      to engage in fraud, and “the falsifiers” – alchemists, counterfeiters,
      perjurers, and imposters, into the inner canyons of the eighth circle
      of hell.

      He goes on, and this really is the crux (recall my use of the snake
      oil picture to illustrate my first post):

          Persons who purposefully promote and teach proven ineffective
      techniques that purport to defeat valid state and court authority, and
      circumvent social obligations, appear to fall into those two
      categories. That they do so, and for profit at the expense of naive
      and vulnerable customers, is worse.

      For litigants, he provides this very useful set of questions to ask of
      those selling the ideas to them, which I will copy in full:

          Why do these gurus seem to have little, if any, wealth, when they
      say they hold the proverbial keys to untold riches?
          Why do those gurus not go to court themselves, if they are so
      certain of their knowledge? If they say they have been to court, ask
      them for the proceeding file number, and see if their account is
      accurate. Those are public records.
          Can that guru identify even one reported court decision where
      their techniques proved successful? If not, why then are all successes
      a tale of an unnamed person, who knew someone who saw that kind of
      event occur?
          How are their ideas different and distinct from those surveyed
      and rejected in these Reasons?
          How are these advisors different from the OPCA gurus who have
      been unsuccessful and found themselves in jail? What did Porisky,
      Warman, and Lindsay do wrong?
          Will your advisors promise to indemnify you, when you apply the
      techniques they claim are foolproof? If not, why?
          If they cannot explain these points, then why should you pay them
      for their legal nonsense?

      Your spells fail

      Judges do not have an easy job. Like sports referees, they are
      criticised when they get it wrong but rarely praised when they get it
      right. They are respected but not loved, and garner little support
      from other public figures for the valuable work that they do.

      But, as any lawyer knows, judges have to play the hand which they are
      dealt, whether in relation to a particular case or a social phenomenon
      such as the Freemen and their sister-movements. Sometimes, this means
      that they are on the front line of a battle between citizens and the
      state, and it is hard enough to deal with the sensible arguments. In a
      way, the barmy ones are much harder if the system is to remain fair
      but also efficient.

      So, I think we should raise our (non-magic) hats to Associate Chief
      Justice Rooke who has taken the time and effort to attack the OPCA
      movement head-on, and provide other judges, worldwide, an extremely
      useful, practical and sensible approach for dealing with this
      dangerous phenomenon. And as interesting and sometimes amusing as it
      may be, dangerous is what it is. For people are signing up to these
      arguments, often paying to do so, in proceedings which could ruin
      their lives. And, as this Judge put it:

          You cannot identify one instance where a court has rolled over
      and behaved as told. Not one. Your spells, when cast, fail.

      See also:

          Freemen of the dangerous nonsense:
      http://ukhumanrightsblog.com/2011/11/15/freemen-of-the-dangerous-nonsense/
          The Freemen, law blogging, and the public understanding of law –
      David Allen Green:
      http://www.thelawyer.com/the-freemen-law-blogging-and-the-public-understanding-of-law/1010369.article



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    • Mike Hannis
      I found the article very interesting - thank you Mark for posting it. I m not enough of a legal nerd to have read the entire judgement, but I have downloaded
      Message 2 of 6 , Dec 2, 2012
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        I found the article very interesting - thank you Mark for posting it.

        I'm not enough of a legal nerd to have read the entire judgement, but I have downloaded it and it may well come in handy, since as it happens I am doing some research on this 'movement' at the moment.

        Hopefully without inviting a long discussion, people may be interested to know that it is based on exploitative mumbo-jumbo put about by a group of charismatic right-wing libertarian North Americans, in an attempt to profit from the desire of gullible people  to get out of paying debts and taxes.

        I am enough of a legal nerd to be in the business of occasionally assisting with low impact planning cases, and I've been concerned of late to witness enthusiasts promoting the idea that this confused ideology should be applied to planning issues.

        If there's anyone reading this who really thinks you can get around planning policy by refusing consent to maritime law, claiming allodial title, or creating an eleemosynary trust, then please refrain from advising anyone to follow your example until you have actually succeeded. I suspect it will be a long wait.

        Some people seem to have very strong views about what "we" "should" be discussing on this list. I for one would much rather read interesting posts like Mark's than any more sniping and infighting.

        Cheers
        Mike



        On 01/12/2012 11:51, Brendan Boal wrote:
         
        Whereas I fully acknowledge the shortcomings of the 'free man' movement, they are, never the less, trying in their own slightly deluded way to resist the system. As such, they are merely one of a number of well intentioned radical movements who think that 'this' or 'that' big idea is the answer to everything. By contrast, judges are unequivocally part of the system of privelige and oppression. Given that we are political radicals and not legal nerds, effusively promoting a judge's systematic dismemberment of the 'free men' is not something we should be doing on this list.


        From: "mark@..." <mark@...>
        To: TheLandisOurs@yahoogroups.com
        Sent: Friday, 30 November 2012, 21:49
        Subject: [TheLandIsOurs] Freemen on the Land are “parasites” peddling “pseudolegal nonsense” - ruling by Canadian judge


        Freemen on the Land are “parasites” peddling “pseudolegal nonsense”:
        Canadian judge fights back

        September 30, 2012 by Adam Wagner
        Ref:
        http://ukhumanrightsblog.com/2012/09/30/freemen-of-the-land-are-parasites-peddling-pseudolegal-nonsense-canadian-judge-fights-back/


      • Alison Banville
        Reminds me that I posted this link on here a while back about a couple who refused to register their child s birth and despite being threatened and lied to by
        Message 3 of 6 , Dec 2, 2012
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          Reminds me that I posted this link on here a while back about a couple who refused to register their child's birth and despite being threatened and lied to by the authorities stood firm. They even got their unregistered kid a passport. From what I can recall there were some amusingly disgruntled responses but no-one seemed very interested in why the state was so desperate to get the child registered? I think that disinterest in ver interesting, and revealing: http://bsnews.info/_DenialofConsent.html
           
          From: Mike Hannis <mikehannis@...>
          To: TheLandIsOurs@yahoogroups.com
          Sent: Sunday, 2 December 2012, 16:34
          Subject: Re: [TheLandIsOurs] Freemen on the Land are “parasites” peddling “pseudolegal nonsense” - ruling by Canadian judge
           
          I found the article very interesting - thank you Mark for posting it. I'm not enough of a legal nerd to have read the entire judgement, but I have downloaded it and it may well come in handy, since as it happens I am doing some research on this 'movement' at the moment. Hopefully without inviting a long discussion, people may be interested to know that it is based on exploitative mumbo-jumbo put about by a group of charismatic right-wing libertarian North Americans, in an attempt to profit from the desire of gullible people  to get out of paying debts and taxes. I am enough of a legal nerd to be in the business of occasionally assisting with low impact planning cases, and I've been concerned of late to witness enthusiasts promoting the idea that this confused ideology should be applied to planning issues. If there's anyone reading this who really thinks you can get around planning policy by refusing consent to maritime law, claiming allodial title, or creating an eleemosynary trust, then please refrain from advising anyone to follow your example until you have actually succeeded. I suspect it will be a long wait. Some people seem to have very strong views about what "we" "should" be discussing on this list. I for one would much rather read interesting posts like Mark's than any more sniping and infighting. Cheers Mike
          On 01/12/2012 11:51, Brendan Boal wrote:
           
          Whereas I fully acknowledge the shortcomings of the 'free man' movement, they are, never the less, trying in their own slightly deluded way to resist the system. As such, they are merely one of a number of well intentioned radical movements who think that 'this' or 'that' big idea is the answer to everything. By contrast, judges are unequivocally part of the system of privelige and oppression. Given that we are political radicals and not legal nerds, effusively promoting a judge's systematic dismemberment of the 'free men' is not something we should be doing on this list.

          From: mailto:mark@... mailto:mark@...
          To: TheLandisOurs@yahoogroups.com
          Sent: Friday, 30 November 2012, 21:49
          Subject: [TheLandIsOurs] Freemen on the Land are “parasites” peddling “pseudolegal nonsense” - ruling by Canadian judge
          Freemen on the Land are “parasites” peddling “pseudolegal nonsense”: Canadian judge fights back September 30, 2012 by Adam Wagner Ref: http://ukhumanrightsblog.com/2012/09/30/freemen-of-the-land-are-parasites-peddling-pseudolegal-nonsense-canadian-judge-fights-back/
        • Alison Banville
          Interesting Freeman comments, but I notice no-one has answered my question about the couple who successfully did not register their child s birth despite
          Message 4 of 6 , Dec 9, 2012
          • 0 Attachment
            Interesting Freeman comments, but I notice no-one has answered my question about the couple who successfully did not register their child's birth despite pressure and lies from the authoritie and then got the kid a passport. Curiou silence peeps. And why such desperation by said authorities? Any takers on that one? This is a real life example, not theory, so don't be shy in addressing it folks!http://bsnews.info/_DenialofConsent.html
             
             And here's Mary Elizabeth Croft's 'How I Clobbered Every Bureaucratic Cash-Confiscatory Agency Known to Man' which is a great read whatever your opinion:
             
            From: Mike Hannis <mikehannis@...>
            To: TheLandIsOurs@yahoogroups.com
            Sent: Sunday, 2 December 2012, 16:34
            Subject: Re: [TheLandIsOurs] Freemen on the Land are “parasites” peddling “pseudolegal nonsense” - ruling by Canadian judge
             
            I found the article very interesting - thank you Mark for posting it. I'm not enough of a legal nerd to have read the entire judgement, but I have downloaded it and it may well come in handy, since as it happens I am doing some research on this 'movement' at the moment. Hopefully without inviting a long discussion, people may be interested to know that it is based on exploitative mumbo-jumbo put about by a group of charismatic right-wing libertarian North Americans, in an attempt to profit from the desire of gullible people  to get out of paying debts and taxes. I am enough of a legal nerd to be in the business of occasionally assisting with low impact planning cases, and I've been concerned of late to witness enthusiasts promoting the idea that this confused ideology should be applied to planning issues. If there's anyone reading this who really thinks you can get around planning policy by refusing consent to maritime law, claiming allodial title, or creating an eleemosynary trust, then please refrain from advising anyone to follow your example until you have actually succeeded. I suspect it will be a long wait. Some people seem to have very strong views about what "we" "should" be discussing on this list. I for one would much rather read interesting posts like Mark's than any more sniping and infighting. Cheers Mike
            On 01/12/2012 11:51, Brendan Boal wrote:
             
            Whereas I fully acknowledge the shortcomings of the 'free man' movement, they are, never the less, trying in their own slightly deluded way to resist the system. As such, they are merely one of a number of well intentioned radical movements who think that 'this' or 'that' big idea is the answer to everything. By contrast, judges are unequivocally part of the system of privelige and oppression. Given that we are political radicals and not legal nerds, effusively promoting a judge's systematic dismemberment of the 'free men' is not something we should be doing on this list.

            From: mailto:mark@... mailto:mark@...
            To: TheLandisOurs@yahoogroups.com
            Sent: Friday, 30 November 2012, 21:49
            Subject: [TheLandIsOurs] Freemen on the Land are “parasites” peddling “pseudolegal nonsense” - ruling by Canadian judge
            Freemen on the Land are “parasites” peddling “pseudolegal nonsense”: Canadian judge fights back September 30, 2012 by Adam Wagner Ref: http://ukhumanrightsblog.com/2012/09/30/freemen-of-the-land-are-parasites-peddling-pseudolegal-nonsense-canadian-judge-fights-back/
          • Mike Hannis
            Alison The case described here shows only that given sufficient alternative documentary evidence of the child s identity, passports may sometimes be issued for
            Message 5 of 6 , Dec 10, 2012
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              Alison

              The case described here shows only that given sufficient alternative documentary evidence of the child's identity, passports may sometimes be issued for children whose parents refuse to provide a birth certificate. If anything, this rather undermines theories about the hidden significance of birth certificates. There is no evidence of any "desperation", and certainly no evidence that the child's "future sweat equity has not been pledged to the Crown", as inexplicably claimed on the site.

              Cheers
              Mike



              On 09/12/2012 21:08, Alison Banville wrote:
               
              Interesting Freeman comments, but I notice no-one has answered my question about the couple who successfully did not register their child's birth despite pressure and lies from the authoritie and then got the kid a passport. Curiou silence peeps. And why such desperation by said authorities? Any takers on that one? This is a real life example, not theory, so don't be shy in addressing it folks!http://bsnews.info/_DenialofConsent.html
               
               And here's Mary Elizabeth Croft's 'How I Clobbered Every Bureaucratic Cash-Confiscatory Agency Known to Man' which is a great read whatever your opinion:
               
              From: Mike Hannis <mikehannis@...>
              To: TheLandIsOurs@yahoogroups.com
              Sent: Sunday, 2 December 2012, 16:34
              Subject: Re: [TheLandIsOurs] Freemen on the Land are “parasites” peddling “pseudolegal nonsense” - ruling by Canadian judge
               
              I found the article very interesting - thank you Mark for posting it. I'm not enough of a legal nerd to have read the entire judgement, but I have downloaded it and it may well come in handy, since as it happens I am doing some research on this 'movement' at the moment. Hopefully without inviting a long discussion, people may be interested to know that it is based on exploitative mumbo-jumbo put about by a group of charismatic right-wing libertarian North Americans, in an attempt to profit from the desire of gullible people  to get out of paying debts and taxes. I am enough of a legal nerd to be in the business of occasionally assisting with low impact planning cases, and I've been concerned of late to witness enthusiasts promoting the idea that this confused ideology should be applied to planning issues. If there's anyone reading this who really thinks you can get around planning policy by refusing consent to maritime law, claiming allodial title, or creating an eleemosynary trust, then please refrain from advising anyone to follow your example until you have actually succeeded. I suspect it will be a long wait. Some people seem to have very strong views about what "we" "should" be discussing on this list. I for one would much rather read interesting posts like Mark's than any more sniping and infighting. Cheers Mike On 01/12/2012 11:51, Brendan Boal wrote:
               
              Whereas I fully acknowledge the shortcomings of the 'free man' movement, they are, never the less, trying in their own slightly deluded way to resist the system. As such, they are merely one of a number of well intentioned radical movements who think that 'this' or 'that' big idea is the answer to everything. By contrast, judges are unequivocally part of the system of privelige and oppression. Given that we are political radicals and not legal nerds, effusively promoting a judge's systematic dismemberment of the 'free men' is not something we should be doing on this list.

              From: mailto:mark@... mailto:mark@...
              To: TheLandisOurs@yahoogroups.com
              Sent: Friday, 30 November 2012, 21:49
              Subject: [TheLandIsOurs] Freemen on the Land are “parasites” peddling “pseudolegal nonsense” - ruling by Canadian judge
              Freemen on the Land are “parasites” peddling “pseudolegal nonsense”: Canadian judge fights back September 30, 2012 by Adam Wagner Ref: http://ukhumanrightsblog.com/2012/09/30/freemen-of-the-land-are-parasites-peddling-pseudolegal-nonsense-canadian-judge-fights-back/

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