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Los Angeles, California March 29, 2006
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Obedience to the Law Declared Harassment!- So Argues the SD. Chamber of CommerceCapitol-ismThursday February 23, 2006Special Report: Amendment E
Judicial Harassment Disguised as Accountability
bul·lyPronunciation: 'bu-lE, Function: noun 2a: a blustering browbeating person.
It will be listed on this fall's ballot as Amendment E. Proponents like to use an acronym J.A.I.L. (Judicial Accountability Initiated Law). There are many other descriptions for it but this is a family publication. Well, assuming readers are fond enough of their families to protect them from dire boredom, this still strives to be a publication of reasonable decorum.
Amendment E is an attempt to institutionalize the harassment of judges (and many others), should they offend an individualized and ephemeral notion of justice. It has been brought to South Dakota by an activist from California who is using this state's initiative laws to establish a victory he hopes will spread across the nation. [Note - Capitol-ism believes the trend of using South Dakota as a beachhead for experimental laws will continue, given the low number of signatures required to place an initiative on the ballot, the lack of geographical distribution requirements for those signatures and low cost media making campaigns very cost efficient].
How it would work. In case it has escaped notice to this point, the South Dakota Chamber of Commerce is opposed to Amendment E. Here is what this amendment will do.
Amendment E will create a super grand jurythat can strip judicial immunity from judges or other public officials, thereby allowing civil suits to be filed against these individuals. The super grand jury will be established in the state's constitution to have the power to determine "both law and fact", meaning if the grand jury doesn't like the restraints of current law, they can make it "right". This is an echo of jury nullification attempted several years ago that would have allowed juries to arrive at any verdict, regardless of legal restraints.
Who can serve on the Super Grand Jury?Anyone who is a citizen at least 30 years old and has been in South Dakota for 2 years. Those excluded are "any appointed or elected official members of the State Bar, Judges (active or retired) judicial prosecutorial and law enforcement personnel." The only other exclusions are people judged to have mental incapacity, imprisonment, or parole from a conviction of felonious crime against persons.
Business pays the costs. The Super Grand Jury members will be paid the same rate as judges. The initiative demands a funding level of twice the annual pay of the 13 jurors and requires that the funds be raised by the imposition "appropriate surcharges upon the civil court filing fees of corporate litigants as necessary to supplement the funding of this amendment.
Not Just Judges. The reach of Amendment E goes well beyond judges. There are numerous boards and commissions that regular citizens (including your employees and yourself) serve on that have some level of judicial immunity. Official actions of boards of equalization or planning commissions have the same protection again harassment granted through "quasi-judicial" immunity.
The Chamber has been given a copy of several emails during which proponents discuss how the Super Grand Jury can be used to address the actions of any level of government. Don't like a zoning decision? The remedy is straight forward, file a lawsuit and if the judge throws it out, you can take him and the zoning board to the super grand jury seeking the right to file lawsuits against them.
Because the 13 members of the Super Grand Jury will be the sole determiners of both law and fact, it would be good if they were members of your immediate family (although it might be good to avoid ex-spouses, especially for those owing back child support). While intended to bring some comedic relief to this horrid topic, the comment above is designed to point out the peril of this proposal. It will be people offended by the courts, regardless of their own accountability, that will use this system to exercise their angst endlessly.
An End to UCC? The anger of proponents toward the current system of governance extends well beyond the judiciary. Quoted below you will find the dim view they take of the corporate world and the laws used to govern commerce (Warning - you are about to read a portion of a newsletter answering a question about the UCC, you will read some phrases taken from the Declaration of Independence - and mangled badly):
The unauthorized corporate power that has overtaken the People has been "the patient sufferance of [America]" for many decades; "The history of the present [unauthorized corporate power] is a history of repeated injuries and usurpations, all having in direct object the establishment of an absolute tyranny over [this country]."
Yes, Loma, we */do/* "hope that all of you have studied history and understand that we are being ruled under UCC corporate law" *_J.A.I.L._* is the means by which the People will carry out their duty to alter or reform government today, The People will settle for nothing less than a Constitutional Republic, a republican form of government --_*NOT*_ A DEMOCRACY!
Rough Tactics. During this legislative session, opponents to Amendment E brought forward a resolution urging voters to reject the proposal. During debate on the resolution, several Senators and Representatives discussed receiving hundreds of emails decrying their position. The overwhelming majority of these emails are from out-of-state and many of them are rude.
Proponents have sent letters to all legislators demanding they confirm whether they support Amendment E or oppose it. These letters give a deadline and conclude by saying if the group does not hear from a legislator by the deadline, they will be listed on their website as being an opponent. These are not the actions of a respectable advocacy (see definition above).
The Chamber has received one such email which featured a complaint about a particular court preceding and had a long list of accusations the sender claims are being ignored by the courts. It is this level of discontent that will be endlessly brought forward, should Amendment E become law.
Conclusion: Capitol-ism believes it was Mark Twain that said"it ain't what a man don't know that makes him dangerous . . . its what he do know that ain't so"
Clouded by a misreading of the founding father's intention and a complete distortion of the elegant expressions in the Declaration of Independence, the proponents of Amendment E have brought forward a proposal that would not be worth brief banter, except for the fact that the initiative process has brought it perilously close to becoming law.
Amendment E is dangerous.
The Chamber encourages members to oppose it.It should be noted that as most other critics of South Dakota J.A.I.L., Capitol-ism, a publication of the South Dakota Chamber of Commerce, is condemning the People's Initiative process. In other words, they are against the rights of the People of South Dakota as described in Article VI, Sec. 26 of their Constitution, to wit, "All political power is inherent in the People, and all free government is founded on their authority..." One would naturally think that the South Dakota Chamber of Commerce (COC) would be in favor of the rights of the South Dakotans, and not against them. Perhaps the People are being deceived by the COC as to where the allegiances of their Chamber of Commerce is.Also, it should be noted that the South Dakota Chamber of Commerce believes that being held accountable to the law is harassment, to wit, judges should not have to obey the law, that they should be free to commit fraud and conspire together, to violate due process of law at whim, and to deliberately disregard truth, or commit acts forbidden them by statutory jurisdiction, to block lawful conclusions of cases, as well as deliberately violate the Constitution. Gee, imagine if everyone in South Dakota chose this same lifestyle in pursuit of equal protections of the law under the Fourteenth Amendment of the Constitution. If a life of crime and disorder is to be chosen over honesty and civility, then why have courts at all? Should we have courts just to harass our People and eat out their substance? After all, that is the logical conclusion if law does not matter.Are not the courts and the judges to show us by example the kind of behavior they expect of the People, or are judges above the law, that is, do as I say, not as I do? If we did that, everyone would lose respect for the courts, and we would descend into lawlessness. But this is precisely what the South Dakota Chamber of Commerce is advocating - lawlessness.Further, one would look hard and through to find any mention whatsoever regarding UCC in the writings of J.A.I.L. How do we know? Because we say nothing about the UCC. Oh, yes, we have received numerous letters from people seeking to engage us re the UCC, but we just do not accept their challenge. S, sorry, COC, we have never advocated nor sought for "An End to UCC." Why would we? J.A.I.L. does not seek to change laws, contrariwise, but to enforce them. Therefore, you totally strike out on stating that J.A.I.L. is out to end the Uniform Commercial Code. We do realize, however, that your argument serves your special interest in condemning Amendment E. But we did not know that COC was supposed to be a special interest organization. Are we mistaken on that point?You say that we are "Clouded by a misreading of the founding father's intention." You disappoint us. We thought we could understand English well enough to understand the words of our Founding Fathers. It seems very clear to us that they did not trust judges at all, and that is a main reason they instituted juries because judges could not be trusted. So, do you disagree with that proposition? If you do, then we think that someone else needs to go back to school and learn English.
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