The Brett Kimberlin Saga:

Follow this link to my BLOCKBUSTER STORY of how Brett Kimberlin, a convicted terrorist and perjurer, attempted to frame me for a crime, and then got me arrested for blogging when I exposed that misconduct to the world. That sounds like an incredible claim, but I provide primary documents and video evidence proving that he did this. And if you are moved by this story to provide a little help to myself and other victims of Mr. Kimberlin’s intimidation, such as Robert Stacy McCain, you can donate at the PayPal buttons on the right. And I thank everyone who has done so, and will do so.

Friday, June 29, 2012

Breaking: John Norton Obtains Peace Order Against Convicted Terrorist Brett Kimberlin...

...and Convicted Terrorist Brett Kimberlin Obtains Peace Order Against John Norton

Yes, apparently it was a split decision today in the District Court of Maryland.  I explained to you yesterday why neither man deserved a peace order, but apparently instead those wacky district court judges gave both men a peace order.  Here are the screencaps:

Which frankly makes no sense at all.  This is only further confirmation that the district court system in Montgomery County, Maryland, is incapable of properly administering the peace order statute.  In my case, they have now twice found that protected speech is “harassment” when it plainly is not, and they have just today issued two peace orders that shouldn’t have been issued.

Why is this the case?  In my opinion, it has to do with the appellate system.  Every single appeal from these decisions is de novo.  For non-lawyers, that means a whole new trial occurs in the circuit court—almost as if the prior case never even happened.  So that takes out of the system an important element of accountability.  The district court judges seem to think, “so what if I get it wrong? They’ll get a new trial in the circuit court.”  And when all you are telling a person to do is to stay away from a person’s residence, I suppose that isn’t such a bad thing; but when you are infringing on a person’s First Amendment rights, it is.

Exclusive: Convicted Perjurer Brett Kimberlin’s Criminal Complaint Against Martin Maher

Now in yesterday’s document dump, I showed how the dueling peace order petitions between convicted terrorist Brett Kimberlin and John Norton did not even allege enough elements to justify issuing a temporary, let alone final, peace order, for either side.  And I am watching the Maryland Judiciary Case Search to see what outcome we might have in that case.  I can reveal that John Norton filed a motion for a continuance on the basis of the fact that he was having difficulty finding a lawyer and that it was already denied.  He might in theory raise it again.

But today we are going to look at the criminal complaint against Martin Maher.  If you go onto the Maryland website and look up the case you can see the following:

The Story I Couldn’t Tell, Part I: Introduction and The Law of Peace Orders in Maryland

This is the first in a series of posts that I introduced here.

For almost a month, I was forbidden from doing a simple thing: saying the name Brett Kimberlin.  I was prohibited from blogging about Brett Kimberlin, which might have even included blogging about the hearing where this unconstitutional court order was applied (because it involved Brett Kimberlin), about the arrest on false charges (because they were filed by Brett Kimberlin), or even my efforts to fight back (because I was fighting back against Brett Kimberlin).  So there were many events in my life, dear reader, that I just couldn’t talk about and this is my effort to catch you up on them.

This part will probably seem the driest, but it really needs to be understood as a foundation for the rest of it.  Today I am going to talk about the law of peace orders in Maryland.  My purpose isn’t to give anyone advice.  If you are facing a peace order in real life, the standard advice is to suggest you find an attorney as soon as possible and get his or her advice.  But we in the public have an interest in understanding how the law works, and how it doesn’t work, so that we can work to improve it.

But let me start by taking you back to May...

On May 17, I published a massive post describing much if not all the reprehensible conduct Brett Kimberlin has engaged in up until that point.  Indeed, I showed you, with documentary and video evidence, that Kimberlin actually tried to get my wife and I killed and to frame me for a crime and how I sought justice for the crimes he committed against me.  And I asked you for help in that quest.

I will admit that I didn’t quite know what to expect when I put the story out.  I was worried people would say “ho-hum” or something like that.  Instead, there was a massive response.  As best as I can tell, the story went viral.  Literally half the hits I had  received in the life of my blog before the SWATting last Monday has occurred since this story broke.  I have to believe that it is just person after person picking up the story and saying, “Holy ____!” and then telling their friends they must read it.  That and generous links from people like Michelle Malkin, Robert Stacy McCain, Tiffany Gabbay at the Blaze (who helped me get on Glenn Beck’s radio program) and more than I can hope to catalogue.  This was further punctuated by Lee Stranahan declaring an Everyone Blog About Brett Kimberlin day.  (Yes, he gets credit for that.)

So naturally I had to be shut up.  He wanted me to be shut up even though it had clearly gotten much bigger than just me.  Perhaps he thought to make an example of me.  Perhaps he really believes I am the puppet master pulling Michelle Malkin's, Instapundit's, and everyone else's strings.  Who knows?

So even though Kimberlin had been told by Judge Johnson that he can’t get a peace order to keep a guy from talking about him truthfully on the internet, that is exactly what he tried to do.  And to a disturbing degree, he has succeeded.

Thursday, June 28, 2012

Exclusive: Brett Kimberlin v. John Norton... and John Norton v. Brettt Kimberlin!

So every day I check the Maryland Judiciary Case Search website, seeing what Kimberlin and some of the other players are doing, particularly to see if Kimberlin has filed any more bogus charges, peace orders, etc. against me.  And I began to notice a few peculiar things.  First was a charge of misuse of phone against a Martin Maher in Florida filed by Kimberlin.  And then there was a peace order against John Norton, also by Kimberlin.  It was interesting, but I didn’t see any direct relevance involving me, until I saw Kimberlin’s response to my motion for a stay.  Then we see this in paragraphs 2 and 3 of his response:

2.      Petitioner [Kimberlin] has continued to receive many death threats and had people stalk him on behalf of Mr. Walker since the Peace Order was issued.  In fact, Petitioner had to file criminal charges against one man named Martin Maher who called Petitioner and said that he had a swat team that was going to “take care Aaron Walker’s problems.”  See Kimberlin v Maher, #. 3D00279429 Mr. Maher called Petitioner, Petitioner’s 13 year old daughter, Petitioner’s elderly mother, and all of Petitioner’s neighbors making alarming and threatening calls on behalf of Mr. Walker.

3.      On June 15, 2012, Petitioner found a stalker lurking outside his home taking pictures.  Petitioner called 911 and the police identified the man as John Firman Norton, and he lives in Fairfax, Virginia, very close to Mr. Walker’s home.  Mr. Walker’s client, Seth Allen, posted at least one of the pictures taken by Mr. Norton on a blog. Exhibit B.  On June 22, 2012, Petitioner filed for a Peace Order against Mr. Norton.

Well, first off I never heard of either man until Kimberlin filed against them and I certainly didn’t command them, ask them or even desire for them or anyone else to do anything of the sort (assuming they did anything he claims) and indeed had no knowledge that they were going to do this ahead of time, given that I didn’t even know they existed until Kimberlin filed against them.

But now these men were being accused of bad behavior, and I was being accused of controlling them, somehow.  Go figure.  Which made the filings against these men suddenly directly relevant to my life.

So today I obtained copies of the dueling peace orders and the criminal charges against Mr. Maher.  Today I’ll give you the peace orders, tomorrow the criminal charges.

Now I can’t tell you much about the veracity of either man’s account.  Kimberlin for his part is a convicted perjurer and an absolutely pathological liar who has shown no hesitation in lying under oath in order to harm me.  And he evidently thinks his charges against Norton harm me.

But it doesn’t follow from that, that Norton is innocent either.  In fact, Norton’s account leaves open to me a number of unanswered questions.  But at least it gives him a chance to defend himself.

But here’s the thing.  Even if you believe every word Brett Kimberlin has said, this is not sufficient for a peace order—at least if the District Court follows the law.

Let’s look at Kimberlin’s petition for a peace order:

Breaking: Obamacare Survives... As a Tax?! (Update x3: Decision Embedded, Analyzed, and Geraghty Weighs in on the Need for a Filibuster-Proof Majority)

No opinion yet.  Will update when there is one.  Update: here it is.  The Supreme Court's servers are probably going to crash, so I uploaded a copy of it to Scribd.

Obamacare Decision

I find that to be a highly dubious approach to things.  I wrote about this idea back in my Patterico days, here.

As I tweeted just a while ago, it looks like if you want to get rid of Obamacare, you need to get rid of Obama... and just enough Democrats to survive a filibuster.

And let me say something else.  This demonstrates that we cannot simply outsource fidelity to the Constitution to any one branch.  The Supreme Court has allowed flagrantly unconstitutional laws to stand before.  Under the Alien and Sedition Acts, people were being imprisoned for criticizing the President—for engaging in protected speech.  Truth was not even allowed as a defense.  (Gee, that sounds oddly familiar...)

And then what happened?  We the people rose up and threw those bastards out.  They called it the Revolution of 1800, one of several claimed peaceful “revolutions” at the ballot box.  We the people are the ultimate guardians of our Constitution.

So yes, it is a result I am not happy with.  But if you don’t like it, we need to get Obama out of office.  It’s that simple.

Update: Patterico has video of Obama denying the mandate is a tax.  This is a great day for politicians who want to have their "I didn't raise taxes" cake, and eat it too.  Obama can pretend he didn't raise taxes because it is not called a tax, but gets to keep Obamacare as a law on the taxing power.

Update (III): Jim Geraghty outlines what it takes to undo this.  I see that Romney can to much by himself, and even more with a majority in Congress, but can he get rid of all of it without a filibuster?  Its unclear.

Update(II): Some quick analysis of the opinion by Roberts...

The Other Victory For Freedom of Expression Last Monday

While the victory Monday was sweet, lost in all of my celebration, and um, SWATting, there as another victory for Freedom of Expression.  It was in a decision put out by the Supreme Court.

Let me give you the background.  In 2010, we had the decision in Citizens United that struck down laws stating that said that corporations could not speak, for or against a candidate, within a certain number of days of an election.

Then last year in Montana, their supreme court held that a law utterly prohibiting corporate speech in elections was still constitutional.  Now how, you might ask, did they manage that?  Well, they explained that the situation was different for three reasons.  First, they said that well, it really didn’t limit anyone’s participation in politics anyway.  Oh, good, so then what is the point of this law, then?

Second, they said that the regulatory burden imposed by their law was slighter.

prospectorAnd then third, because corruption is so endemic to Montana that Montanans are just uniquely susceptible to corporate influence—like they are like a bunch of archetypical crazy prospectors looking for Gooooold!

Personally, if I lived in Montana, I would be offended.

So they upheld their law and it was appealed all the way to the Supreme Court where it was overturned, in the case styled ultimately as American Trading Partnership, Inc. v. Bullock.  It’s a long opinion, but I think it is worth cutting and pasting it in its entirety below the fold and dang is it long...

A New Series of Posts: The Story I Couldn’t Tell

I want to announce tonight that I am starting a new series of posts.  I am going to try to concentrate on telling this story.  Obviously if big news happens I might divert myself from it.  Like tomorrow, we very well might have the Obamacare decision so I probably will post something on that.  And then back to this.  The outline is fairly straightforward.  On May 29, 2012, a judge imposed an unconstitutional peace order on me and then as the hearing ended, a sheriff’s deputy came up to me and arrested me.  But I have never been able to tell you my side of it, and while others did a decent job there were always some things I wanted to say about it, that I couldn’t, that I felt needed to be said.

So I am going to tell the story I couldn’t tell.

My planned structure will be this.  The first post will be a primer on the law and process involved in peace orders in Maryland.  You need to understand this in order to understand how this law is being abused.

The third will be talking about the hearing on May 22, 2012.  For the first time, dear reader, I will share with you the transcript from that hearing, and there will be an interesting revelation—verification of what I have suspected for a very long time.

The fifth will be about the May 29 hearing, the arrest and subsequent release and any other remaining issues.

This will be the definitive version of the account.  I lived it.  I saw it first-hand.  There were nice people who reported as best as they could, but they never saw all the things I have seen.  And hopefully by the time I am done the new hearing on July 5 will have rolled around and the story will continue, in real time.

And yeah, I am even thinking of turning all this into a book—on Amazon kindle like the novel I wrote.  I’ll think about that.

So that is my plan and as I put each piece into place, I will update this post with links to them and links to each other, so it ends up like the version of the monster post that ended up broken into eight pieces.

But first I want to talk about an event in the news that has been overlooked...

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Tune in Tonight to the Lars Larson Show

I’m going to be the guest tonight on the show to talk Brett Kimberlin, and you can find ways to listen in, here.

Update: Gee, it would help if I told you I would be on at 8 p.m. Eastern time.

Exclusive: Convicted Terrorist Brett Kimberlin’s Associate Neal Rauhauser’s Attempt to Manufacture the Appearance of a Conspiracy

So, hot on the heels of Patterico’s revelation of Rauhauser’s likely sock puppet “Gaped Crusader” I thought I would release an email I had been holding back.  I didn’t want to release it in my monster post, because I suspected much of what Neal said in the email was defamatory toward third persons.  But I have seen that increasingly it is vital evidence to prove a specific point, and I think most of you are grown up enough to figure out that just because someone says something doesn’t mean it’s necessarily true.z

Team Kimberlin has long been officially haunted by the concept of Team Themis, an underhanded proposal put before the Chamber of Commerce but never acted upon.  It was an action plan designed to destroy the US Chamber Watch and Wikileaks, using disinformation and “sabotage” (though what kind of “sabotage” was imagined is hard to determine).  There are many documents and proposals (I mean we could go on and on about this), but one particular tactic that they proposed was to

Connect US Chamber Watch’s radical tactics to Velvet Revolution, explaining that both entities are loosely operating together. Depending on the level of connection established, such an approach may need to be spotlighted as more of a conspiracy rather than a separate, vocal persona.

As you will recall, Velvet Revolution is the name of one of Brett Kimberlin’s charities and one has to assume that any attack on Velvet Revolution would have started with its director’s sordid criminal history.

In a December 30, 2011 email to my lawyer, Beth Kingsley, Brett Kimberlin wrote this (with the caveat that much of what  he writes is a fabrication):

In addition to this, Velvet Revolution, an organization which I am involved, has a campaign called, which exposes excesses of the Chamber of Commerce.  We have worked with Chamber Watch, a client of  your partner Gail Harmon, and I have talked with Gail about the Chamber and its IRS issues.  We in fact are presently working with the FBI in an investigation of the Chamber and prepared a White Paper for the Bureau which includes as an exhibit the filing that Gail and Cyrus Mehri prepared.  One of our Board Members also has a connection to Ms. Harmon, I believe through Friends of the Earth.  I will be happy to provide her name to you as well as the White Paper if you need them to make your conflict of interest determination.  The Chamber of Commerce hired military intelligence contractors to attack our group, Chamber Watch, and me personally as part of a six million dollar campaign of destruction. See

Although Team Themis was exposed, the Chamber continues to fund operations against us and me, and Mr. Worthing is part of the cabal that the Chamber uses for its nefarious purposes along with others such as those cc’d on the death threat email from Mr. Allen to Mr. Worthing.  We are presently in consultation with counsel about filing a lawsuit against the Chamber et al for the Team Themis campaign of destruction, and there is a very real possibility that Mr. Worthing will be named a defendant in that action, which will most likely be filed in federal court.

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Just a Reminder: Brett Kimberlin Still Wants to Shut Me Up

I found out earlier today that when my lawyer informed Kimberlin that I obtained my stay, that Kimberlin wrote back this response:

From: Justice Through Music
To: Reginald Bours
Sent: Mon, Jun 25, 2012 12:11 pm
Subject: Re: Your peace order against Aaron Walker in the Circuit Court, Case No. 8444D

Again, I want to be left alone by your client.  That is my demand as required by Galloway and the criminal harassment statute.  His false narrative that I framed him is defamatory and inciting extremists to threaten me.  He is responsible for their conduct.  I will not hesitate to seek additional peace orders or criminal harassment charges if he does not leave me alone.

Actually, what Judge Rupp necessarily found is that if I write to a general audience, and did not incite violence or lawlessness against anyone—as defined in Brandenburg—that I was not responsible for the conduct of third parties.  If they harass Kimberlin, by all means Kimberlin should pursue appropriate legal recourse against them, but not try to pretend that I am somehow responsible for third parties over which I have no control.  I am not responsible for the conduct of anyone but myself.

Not even for the ultra-scariness that is Glenn Reynolds:

Breaking News: Convicted Terrorist Brett Kimberlin Loses Again

Fresh after yesterday’s legal setback, Kimberlin finds out that he lost his appeal in his attempt to hold Seth Allen in contempt.

As you will recall, Kimberlin attempted to frame me for assault in a confrontation after a hearing on January 9.  The hearing itself was to determine whether or not Seth Allen was in contempt of a November 14, 2011 order prohibiting Allen from defaming or tortiously interfering with Kimberlin’s business relations.  As I mentioned this morning, Judge Rupp found that nothing that Seth had written constituted defamation and thus it did not violate the order.

I don’t remember any more whether I mentioned this to you, but then Kimberlin appealed that decision to the Court of Special Appeals (the mid-level appellate court in Maryland).  And you can read it for yourself.

My Motion and Convicted Perjurer Brett Kimberlin’s Response

If you are just coming in to this story, you are probably more than a little confused by what I posted yesterday.  I apologize for that.  I promise I will take the time to walk you through it soon, hopefully starting today.  But with this post I am going to fill you in on two important pieces of the back story.

For almost a month now—until yesterday—I have been subject to a flagrantly unconstitutional prior restraint on my freedom of speech.

How flagrantly unconstitutional was this restraint?  Well, at the hearing discussing it the judge disregarded controlling Supreme Court precedent by name—something I will talk about later.  I promise, dear reader, I will tell you bit by bit about my experiences on May 29, being arrested on false charges again, in retaliation for having engaged in protected speech (not to mention the SWATting incident last night).

But if you are thinking that a District Court judge in Maryland—essentially a small-claims judge—has no authority to ignore controlling Supreme Court precedent, you would be right.  So I urged my counsel in that case, Reginald Bours III, to file an emergency motion to stay part of the peace order in the Circuit Court where the case is being appealed.  I know it has been around, but here’s a copy of it embedded here for your convenience:

(By the way, I try to redact all personal information from these documents, such as home addresses, phone numbers, email addresses.  I didn’t redact Mr. Bours’ professional contacts, because I figured he would enjoy the free advertisement.  But in the case of personal information, if I missed anything in my redaction, let me know and I will fix it ASAP.)

Monday, June 25, 2012

What Happened Tonight

So anyone following along on twitter know the basics.  I was SWATted tonight.  My wife was down in the basement, and unknown to me she had fallen asleep in an uncomfortable position while watching TV.  I was just finishing up a post where I was going to share Kimberlin’s nutty response to my motion for a partial stay when someone decided to recklessly endanger my life.

I mean again.  Let’s not forget the last time someone intentionally engaged in conduct that they knew could get me and my wife killed.  In that case we know who the culprit was: Brett Kimberlin.  He intentionally and gratuitously revealed my real name, home address, work and work address, in court documents and then told the police in a letter that he believed because of his actions that “there exists the very real probability that Mr. Walker could be subjected to serious harm or death now that his identity has been exposed.”  And then he fought tooth and nail to keep that information from being sealed, and then fought to get them unsealed.

But tonight we don’t know who did it, although I knew who to tell the police to look at.  I won’t say their names here, of course.

I was writing when there was a knock at the door.  A second knock came and it was very insistent.  I went to the door and looked through the peep hole and there was nothing.  I said something like, “hello?” and someone firmly said, “open the door!”

I opened up to find two cops hugging the front of the house.  They had M4’s as I recognized from video games (see?! They are good for something!) and they later confirmed.  They were not pointed at my face like it had been with Patrick.  They were pointed at the ground.

(When I told my mother that, she said not to minimize it.  No, obviously whoever it was doing their best to get me killed.  Fortunately the police were not so easily tricked.)

An Important Victory For Freedom of Expression

First, dear readers, you should expect this post to change radically--or perhaps I will start a new post.  I just wanted to get this off my chest immediately.

I am free once again to do something very simple.  I am allowed to say the name Brett Kimberlin again.  The fact I was not allowed to do so, even in a post directed to the world at large and rather than any communication directed to Kimberlin himself, is a sign that things have gone horribly wrong in the Maryland legal system.  But more on that later.

Last Wednesday I sought an emergency stay of Judge Vaughey’s flagrantly unconstitutional prior restraint upon my speech.  And it was granted.  You can read it for yourself, here:

So it means I can talk to a general audience about Brett Kimberlin again, so long as I don’t threaten him or incite others to violence, threats or any other kind of lawlessness.

Which brings me to another point and this is important:

I have accused some people, particularly Brett Kimberlin of reprehensible conduct.  In some cases, the conduct is even criminal.  In all cases, the only justice I want is through the appropriate legal process—such as the criminal justice system.  I do not want to see vigilante violence against any person or any threat of such violence.  As you will see very soon, this kind of conduct is not only morally wrong, but it is counter-productive.

In the particular case of Brett Kimberlin, I do not want you to even contact him.  Do not call him.  Do not write him a letter.  Do not write him an email.  Do not text-message him.  Do not engage in any kind of directed communication.  I say this in part because under Maryland law, that can quickly become harassment and I don’t want that to happen to him.

And for that matter, don’t go on his property.  Don’t sneak around and try to photograph him.  Frankly try not to even been within his field of vision.  Your behavior could quickly cross the line into harassment in that way too (not to mention trespass and other concerns).

And do not contact his organizations, either.  And most of all, leave his family alone.

The only exception to all that is that if you are reporting on this, there is of course nothing wrong with contacting him for things like his official response to any stories you might report.  And even then if he tells you to stop contacting him, obey that request.  As you will see by the time I am done explaining what has been going on that this is a key element in making out a harassment claim under Maryland law—that a person asks you to stop and you refuse.

And let me say something else.  In my heart of hearts, I don’t believe that any person supporting me has done any of the above.  But if any of you have, stop it, and if you haven’t don’t start.

So are we clear on all of this?  Good, then let’s move on.

So for now I just wanted to post the actual order.  Coming up very soon?  His response.  And it’s a doozy.

It’s just a matter of how long it takes to scan it in.

And of course there is celebration.  And I have been told to be very dignified in victory which I will be.  Let no one say I am not dignified and magnanimous in victory and…

Ah, what the hell:

And if you are wondering what this is all about, be patient.  I have been silenced unlawfully for almost a month, and I have a lot to tell you.  It will all make sense soon.  For now, start here and you will start to get the picture about what is happening.

Oh, and for those of you who do know what is happening, please hit one of the PayPal buttons on the right and help with one of the two legal defense funds helping me out.  You can read more about them, here.


My wife and I have lost our jobs due to the harassment of convicted terrorist Brett Kimberlin, including an attempt to get us killed and to frame me for a crime carrying a sentence of up to ten years.  I know that claim sound fantastic, but if you read starting here, you will see absolute proof of these claims using documentary and video evidence.  If you would like to donate and help my wife and I in this time of need, please go to this donation page or use the PayPal buttons on the right.  And thank you.

Follow me at Twitter @aaronworthing, mostly for snark and site updates.  And you can purchase my book (or borrow it for free if you have Amazon Prime), Archangel: A Novel of Alternate, Recent History here.  And you can read a little more about my novel, here.

Two Ways to Help With My Cause (Bumped)

This post is going to be bumped so it stays on top until at least Monday at noon.

As you might know I am locked in a struggle for free speech.  I have been subject to a court order so absurdly broad that I might be violating it if I tell you about it.  But if you look around this site, and those of my friends, you will probably get the picture.

And frankly this costs money.  There are two funds that are helping me with this fight.  The first is the National Blogger’s Club relief fund.  You can donate here, and I hope to put their PayPal button on my site soon. Update: Done!

The second is the Bloggers Defense Team, which you can learn more about and donate to, here.  And you can see I have created a PayPal button for this fund already.

And I don’t think I am saying too much to say that neither fund is devoted solely to helping me out.  There are other victims of the phenomenon I am fighting against, and they are getting help through these funds, too.

So look around, at this site and others, and figure out for yourself whether or not I have a just cause.  I trust you to think for yourself on this.  And if you think I do have righteousness on my side, please donate if you can.  And I thank everyone out there for what they have done, whether it is donations, or spreading the word and speaking when I cannot, or just offering moral support.  I appreciate all of it.

Oh and one other thing.  Remember how about a month and a half ago I started saying something big was coming and maybe you doubted I could deliver... and then I did?

Yeah, something big is coming, again.  Maybe on Monday if things work out, but definitely on Tuesday.  Not as big a BLOCKBUSTER as the last big thing, but big.

To riff of my friend Patrick Frey, always trust content from Allergic to Bull!


Follow me at Twitter @aaronworthing, mostly for snark and site updates.  And you can purchase my book (or borrow it for free if you have Amazon Prime), Archangel: A Novel of Alternate, Recent History here.  And you can read a little more about my novel, here.

Sunday, June 24, 2012

Passed Out at Church Today

This is from a D.C. area Catholic church, which shall remain nameless.  This represents the front and back of a little card they handed out—small enough to fit in my shirt pocket.  On the front is a specific prayer and the back is a message.

This seems obviously related to the recent concern and litigation over Obamacare.  I previously discussed the matter here.


Follow me at Twitter @aaronworthing, mostly for snark and site updates.  And you can purchase my book (or borrow it for free if you have Amazon Prime), Archangel: A Novel of Alternate, Recent History here.  And you can read a little more about my novel, here.

Friday, June 22, 2012

A Victory For the Free Expression Coming?

So all the legal nerds in the world tuned in to watch what Supreme Court opinions came down yesterday.  I made corny jokes on twitter, such as that “there is no truth to the rumor that the [Arizona] immigration case will be written entirely in Spanish, just to screw with us.”  But alas we didn’t get our Obamacare decision or even a crummy Arizona immigration decision (in any language) and a lot of people went back to their lives disappointed.

But there was one piece of news buried in one of the decisions that came down.  It was in FCC v. Fox, and reading over it, it had one passage that made my ears perk up.  But to understand it, I have to give you a lot of background.  Around 90% of this piece is going to be help you understand one measly paragraph in that decision, because I think it is potentially momentous.

So, to dive into that context, the Fox network and ABC had engaged in various acts of alleged indecency.  The Court explained these incidents in a way that bled all color or fun out of them, in the way only a court can:

It was against this regulatory background that the three incidents of alleged indecency at issue here took place. First, in the 2002 Billboard Music Awards, broadcast by respondent Fox Television Stations, Inc., the singer Cher exclaimed during an unscripted acceptance speech: “I’ve also had my critics for the last 40 years saying that I was on my way out every year. Right. So f*** ‘em.” 613 F. 3d, at 323. Second, Fox broadcast the Billboard Music Awards again in 2003. There, a person named Nicole Richie made the following unscripted remark while presenting an award: “Have you ever tried to get cow s*** out of a Prada purse? It’s not so f***ing simple.” Ibid. The third incident involved an episode of NYPD Blue, a regular television show broadcast by respondent ABC Television Network. The episode broadcast on February 25, 2003, showed the nude buttocks of an adult female character for approximately seven seconds and for a moment the side of her breast. During the scene, in which the character was preparing to take a shower, a child portraying her boyfriend’s son entered the bathroom. A moment of awkwardness followed. 404 Fed. Appx. 530, 533–534 (CA2 2011). The Commission received indecency complaints about all three broadcasts. See Fox I, 556 U. S., at 510; 404 Fed. Appx., at 534.

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Tune in Tonight for a “Smart” Discussion of Executive Privilege

Update: Stupidly, I failed to note when it would occur: 9 p.m. Eastern, 6 p.m. pacific.  My bad.

As you may have heard, the President asserted executive privilege over some of the documents being sought in the fast and furious scandal.  Well, liberal friend and blog talk radio host John Smart has asked me to appear on this show and you can listen here at this link.

And if you want to do homework to get ready, there is one major case to read before tonight: U.S. v. Nixon.  Yes, that Nixon.  I suggest you just read the facts, and skip over the parts on jurisdiction and justiciability and jump right into the stuff on executive privilege.

By the way, a free legal vocabulary lesson.  When they say “in camera” it is law latin for “in chambers”—meaning the judge looking at whatever it is him or herself, with no one else present.  That will be relevant in reading the case.

I will now flog myself for making that inexcusably bad pun, again, in the title of the post.  My apologies.


Follow me at Twitter @aaronworthing, mostly for snark and site updates.  And you can purchase my book (or borrow it for free if you have Amazon Prime), Archangel: A Novel of Alternate, Recent History here.  And you can read a little more about my novel, here.

Texans Should Be Angry At Lavaca County District Attorney Heather McMinn For Wasting a Citizen’s and Grand Jury’s Time...

The other day I shared with you the story of a father who beat a man to death who was allegedly attempting to rape his four year old daughter.  And we have gotten enough of a picture to say that this is what happened; he was on top of her with his pants down, allegedly.  As I wrote there, I felt that barring something really surprising it looked like a justified killing—meaning it was either strictly in defense of his daughter, or an unintentional killing in the process of defending her.  And I felt that barring surprising evidence to the contrary, he shouldn’t have even been charged.

Well, they went to a Grand Jury anyway, and it came up goose egg.  They refused to even indict him.

And frankly that turns the case into an outrage.  Consider for instance this line in the article I just linked:

In declining to indict the 23-year-old father in the June 9 killing of Jesus Mora Flores, a Lavaca County grand jury reached the same conclusion as investigators and many of the father's neighbors: He was authorized to use deadly force to protect his daughter.

(Emphasis added.)  You got that?  Investigators didn’t think he committed a crime.  And they charged him anyway.

"He's a peaceable soul," V'Anne Huser, the father's attorney, told reporters at the Lavaca County Courthouse. "He had no intention to kill anybody that day."

(Emphasis added.)  I don’t want to focus on what his lawyer said, so much as he was forced to retain a lawyer.  Either he had to pay for that lawyer, or the citizens of Texas had to.

You want to know how heinous this is?  Here’s Heather McMinn, the District Attorney:

Notice that there is not one single word in that presentation discussing any evidence that his legal defense of the defense of his daughter was invalid.  So why did she even bother?

No, folks, it is an injustice that this even went to a Grand Jury.  And the citizens of Lavaca County, Texas, should have some hard questions for their District Attorney.

H/T: Hot Air.


Sidebar: By the way, Shiner, Texas, is home of the beer Shiner Bock.  I don't drink at all, but people who do tell me it is an excellent brew, so consider raising a glass to this father.


Follow me at Twitter @aaronworthing, mostly for snark and site updates.  And you can purchase my book (or borrow it for free if you have Amazon Prime), Archangel: A Novel of Alternate, Recent History here.  And you can read a little more about my novel, here.

Friday, June 15, 2012

Friday Frivolity: The "Dukes Are For Realz!" Edition

Legal Insurrection took a light-hearted email and turned it into something dark and foreboding, and while there is nothing wrong with what he wrote, I want to restore the fun to this.

As you might know, Prof. Jacobson likes to highlight funny/interesting bumper stickers as a break from the otherwise serious topics he discusses on his blog and he always meticulously edits out the license plate.  Well, I sent him one recently.

As I said to Jacobson I know normally you should not put personal information out there.  Phone numbers, email address, etc. should not be posted on a website.  But this seems like a reasonable exception; this is a personalized license plate that seems reasonably calculated to get attention.  I was driving around Manassas about two weeks ago, when I saw an orange “modern” Dodge Charger:

And as I am wont to do when waiting at a red light, I like to read license plates and bumper stickers, and I noticed what this one said on its plate:

And I noticed something else.  That plate is a Virginia Civil War commemorative plate for General Robert E. Lee.  Here’s a better view of the model plate:

Robert E. Lee License Plate

Holy crap!  It’s the Genereal Lee!

Wherever you are, sir, I salute you for a very cool nod back to a silly show I loved as child.

I mean he could have gone the obvious route and painted a Confederate flag on the roof; but instead what he did was subtle, and that makes it awesome.


Follow me at Twitter @aaronworthing, mostly for snark and site updates.  And you can purchase my book (or borrow it for free if you have Amazon Prime), Archangel: A Novel of Alternate, Recent History here.  And you can read a little more about my novel, here.

Memo to Texas “Civil Rights” Group: Fathers (Allegedly) Defending Their Daughters From Sexual Assault Have Rights, Too

If you want to get a view of how upside down so-called “Civil Rights” can get, you can look no further than James Harrington, director of the Texas Civil Rights Project.

It started with the story of an unidentified father who heard his four year old daughter screaming from a barn on his ranch.  When he went to see what the commotion was, he walked in to see a man allegedly doing... something to her.  Some reports say she was being allegedly “raped” and some say she was being “molested.”  Either way, the father took action and literally beat the man allegedly violating his daughter to death.  You can read more about the story, here.

That led to a lot of people saying, “Good job” and “Glad he was dead.”  I for one support the death penalty for child rapists, so long as they have due process before they are killed.  I am pretty consistent in my disdain for any kind of vigilante justice.

But the father here isn’t claiming that he had a right to summarily execute this person.  He is claiming that it was an accident in the process of defending his daughter.

And just to be clear, you have a right to use force not only in self-defense but in the defense of others.  And in most states it is implied, but in Texas it is explicitly stated in the statute, that you can use deadly force to prevent or stop a sexual assault.

Monday, June 11, 2012

Neal Rauhauser on Conspiricism & Competance

Here’s an oldie but goodie from Neal Rauhauser’s blog where he talks about supposed conspiracy nuts and their supposed cognitive deficits.

Now first off there is such a thing as conspiracies.  Indeed, to enter into a conspiracy to commit an illegal act is generally against the law in most states.  All a conspiracy is, stripped down to its essence, is an agreement among two or more people to commit a crime or illegal act.  If you believe the mafia exists, you believe in the existence of conspiracies.  Indeed small conspiracies are proven to exist all the time.

But of course there are truly nutty conspiracy theories that abound.  It is a matter of historical fact, on one hand, that the assassination of Lincoln was in fact part of a larger plot to essentially decapitate the Union government to give the Confederacy a chance to jump-start the rebellion.  John Wilkes Booth and his co-conspirators attempted to kill numerous officials at the same time as Lincoln, but each and every one of them failed except Booth.  On the other hand the balance of evidence is that the claims that anyone shot Kennedy but Oswald is claptrap.  Likewise theories that the freemasons, the jooooooos or the illuminati, or some combination thereof, secretly control the world are of the nutty variety.  And so one has to distinguish between the pedestrian conspiracy theory that is proven to occur on a regular basis and the nutty stuff; and most people can grasp the difference intuitively.

The interesting thing is that Rauhauser himself is associated with numerous nutty conspiracy theorists.  For instance, he openly associates with a 9-11 truther and with Wiener truthers.  For your information, a Weiner truther is a person who thinks that Congressman Anthony Weiner was set up and didn’t send dirty pictures to a lovely co-ed after all, despite the inconvenient fact that he confessed to it.  But it isn’t those kind of conspiracy “nuts” he is talking about in this piece (safe link).

I apologize for the quality of the reproduction.  I printed it out months ago and this is the only remaining copy of it; and the site it came from is now private.  Still, you should start in about the middle of the page under the heading “Conspiracism & Competance.”  It provides a fascinating look into Rauhauser’s mindset.

Friday, June 8, 2012

The Government Exists To Protect Our Rights

Hopefully you are all familiar with the founding documents of this nation: the Constitution, the Bill of Rights and particularly today the Declaration of Independence.  When I was in college, I was mortified when in literature class, the students were required to read the Declaration and most of them expressed surprise about what was actually in it.  So I am not sure I can expect you to know that it says the following:

We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.

To break it down a little bit, we start with the idea that these are self-evident truths.  Of course when they said it the overwhelming majority of the world’s governments did not recognize these “truths” and even today I am not sure a majority of the world’s population lives under a government that respects those truths.  I think the best way to understand those words, then, is that to all good people, these were self-evident truths.  There will always be tyrants, great and petty, and their Brownshirts, who do not believe that these are self-evident truths, but there is a point where you just say, “you know what?  If you can’t even agree on this, then it is not a reflection on the truth of the sentiment, so much as a reflection on your character.”  If these truths are not self-evident to you, it’s an indictment on you.

Sunday, June 3, 2012

On Romney’s Mormonism and Religious Tolerance

Strap yourselves in, because this is going to be a long one.

One morning I tweeted a thought that had been tossing around in my mind for a few days.  It went like this:

Anyone notice that libs hardly ever put down Mormonism when Harry Reid was the most prominent Mormon in politics?

And it and a few reactions got me thinking it was time to put into words some thoughts I had about what religious tolerance really means.

What we have been seeing recently is a great number of attacks on Mormonism as a faith.  And it’s not that I think that it is wrong to denounce Mormon theology or doctrine.  In my humble opinion Mormonism is one of the less plausible answers to the great questions in life.  But this recent criticism is very selective: Mitt Romney’s Mormonism is held against him, but not Harry Reid’s.

And that is a good place to start.  I have said before that I am a Presbyterian and my wife is a Catholic and that we didn’t do the “compromise conversion” thing where the couples convert to a “compromise faith” in order to go to the same church.  Instead sometimes we go to a Presbyterian church, and sometimes we go to a Catholic one.  Frankly we more often go to the Catholic church because Catholics are supposed to take mass ever week (or pray the rosary), but for Presbyterians church going is less important than a deep relationship with God, so my faith allows me to be a little more flexible about actually going to a Presbyterian church.