Thursday, January 10, 2008

Protect Our Courts From More Partisanship and Political Consultants

Normally, I'm cynical about online petitions. In this case, though, the people working to head off efforts to increase the influence of money and partisanship on our judicial selection need to demonstrate that they can reach and motivate a significant number of Missouri voters. Many of the political consultants in Jefferson City believe that this complex issue is over the heads of average voters, and that they can get away with injecting more partisanship into our judicial selection.

Now is the time to shape the understanding of those who want to undermine the Missouri Plan. Now is the time to let them know that a significant bloc of us are watching. Now is the time to let them know that their political football is a hot potato.

Please go here and sign the online petition. It's a rare opportunity to define the terms of an important debate and head off pointless fights. There are a lot of members of the General Assembly who are on the fence on this issue, and if they see that 1500 Missourians are watching, they'll back away from it now, before it really gets started.

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8 Comments:

Blogger whistleblower said...

DO NOT ENDORSE PROTECTJUSTICE.COM

If you click on the link in Dan’s article that says “Please go here and sign the online petition”, you will see a quote by Chip Robertson in the upper right.

Read more about Chip Robertson in this article entitle: Chip Robertson Working With Gun Rights Opponents, Radical Critics of General Petraus [sic], and World’s Wealthiest Radical Activists

The truth is judicial selection currently involves partisan politics. It always has, and always will. Even if you took all of those that meet the qualifications to be a judge, put their names in a hat, and blindly pulled a name; the judge has his or her own partisan political views.

Not everyone that wants to see a change in the Missouri Plan wants the change so that the politics of the court changes. I sure don’t!

The court should not be a political entity. It should be a source of knowledge and wisdom. An institution that honors precedent and constitutional restraint. No matter how a judge attains his or her position on the bench, their political views should be checked before they put on their robe. Failure to do so is failure of the man, not the robe.

The Missouri Bar Association, and its member lawyers want to retain something they never should have been awarded; dominating control over a branch of our government. I don’t blame them for not wanting to give that up.

Adoption of the Missouri Plan took place during a time of fear. Fear that the government was being controlled by the likes of Tom Pendergast. Fear was used to encourage the voters of Missouri to place the selection of the judiciary into the hands of a select few. Now, fear is being used to try to maintain it. Fear of financial influence. Fear of political influence.

The two blogs hosting this article are gonemild.com and CCP blog. Both are run by lawyers. Both are very political. In fact, lawyers are probably the most politically active profession in our country. These politically active lawyers have elections, within the Missouri Bar, to decide who is going to serve on the judicial selection committee. Partisan politics is involved, it’s just limited to a certain class.

I don’t consider lawyers to be evil because they want to retain this control. I consider them to be human. Like most of us, we trust ourselves to do a better job than if we leave it to someone else. Who can do your job better than you? Most people would probably say “no one”; if they really care about doing their job to the best of their abilities. However, this is not the way our country is run.

We live in the U.S.A. The people run their government, or at least that’s the way it is supposed to be. We do it thru democracy and elected representation. The Missouri Plan, as it currently operates, places control of our Judiciary in the hands on the members of the Missouri Bar, by a 4-3 margin. The Governor’s nod is only a token display of representation.

If you look around, the blogs that are supporting the Missouri Plan are run by lawyers. The groups defending the Plan are run by lawyers. IF you look at Islamic Extremist websites, I’ll bet they support Bin Laden. I believe that those sites are genuine in their support too.

I take a lot of abuse from the attorneys on these blogs for trying to restore control of our government to the people. I almost expect it. Have you ever had to take something dangerous from a child that was playing with it? They cry. They tell you they hate you. – Don’t they? The control of our Judiciary should never have been relinquished by the voters, and we can’t leave it with the Bar just because we don’t want them to cry. (I’m not insinuating that lawyers are like children. I’m attempting to display that people will yell, scream and fight when you try to take something they want away from them)

If you want to support the current Missouri Plan just because a liberal activist told you to support it. – You are already using partisan politics to select the judges. The same goes if you promote changes in the Plan because it is the conservative thing to do. Think and vote for yourself. DO a little research. If you believe that an oligarchy is the best form of government, you should push for a constitutional amendment. (Wait a minute. We already have an oligarchy. It was accepted as the Missouri Plan) There is plenty of time before the November ballot.

This is not written to offend. My opinions are sincere. Will Socrates be proven correct?

1/10/2008 10:39 AM  
Anonymous Socrates said...

Sorry, Pal, you've gone around the bend. You might not be trying to offend, but apparently it comes naturally to you. Comparing the Bar to al Qaeda is, well, fucking nuts. No other way to put it.

Dan has proven you wrong on point after point, time after time. Why don't you give up and go away? Or, at least, if you're going to post a link to a crazy-ass article by a lunatic like that Chip Robertson article, why don't you include the link? Are you afraid someone will read it and realize that you are a tin-foil hatted dingbat?

BTW, I'm not a lawyer. I'm a citizen who has been reading your crap for a while. I thought at first you might be right, then I saw you go whacko on Dan when he corrected you on 12 points, so you started to dig into his personal life. Then I realized that you are not a healthy man.

Now, I realize I'm being a bit personal here, but I want people to be careful in how they view you.

By all means, though, I encourage people to look into your rants and your previous comments. Pay attention to the paranoia and the conspiracy theories. Pay attention to the constant personalization of the issues. Pay attention to the way you never respond when you're proven wrong - you just make up another point.

I've done my own research, and I signed up for the protect justice petition.

1/10/2008 10:54 AM  
Blogger Xavier Onassis said...

"The court should not be a political entity."

I couldn't agree more. That's why I don't think judges should be subject to public election in Missouri or anywhere else.

Judges should be experienced, qualified, objective and INDEPENDENT.

I think the Bar is best suited to review the qualifications of judicial candidates.

I don't want some used car salesman or preacher getting elected to the bench because he had deep pockets, the right sponsors and the cutest campaign slogan.

The people opposed to the Missouri Plan are mostly right wing fanatics who want to have the power to vote a judge out of office if they don't agree with the verdicts they pass down.

They also want to be able to vote IN judges with an agenda.

I want judges objectively ruling on the merits of a case. I don't want them reaching verdicts based on what would please or anger their constituents.

Keep politics out of the judiciary.

1/10/2008 10:59 AM  
Blogger whistleblower said...

Socrates...

I apologize if you took the Islamic Extremist reference as a comparison to the Bar. I was pointing out support by your own members not only lacks independence, but is to be expected.

"at least, if you're going to post a link to a crazy-ass article by a lunatic like that Chip Robertson article, why don't you include the link?"

I did...that's what the blue underlined stuff is. I doubt Dan would want me to reproduce the entire article in a comment.

Socrates was right -"When the debate is lost, slander becomes the tool of the loser."

And Socrates...if you really are honest and honorable, why don't you pick a username and stick with it? Then maybe people could look at your previous comments. You could still remain anonymous, but be accountable.

I'll agree that my previous attack on Dan was not the best choice, but it was in response to him suggesting that I had some criminal record. I, and I hope Dan, have moved past that.

XO...

You don't have to worry about used car salesman or preachers getting on the bench because they have deep pockets. All Missouri judges must be licensed attorneys. The only exception is for municipalities of 7,500 or less. So, I guess it is possible for a used car salesman with deep pockets to get on the bench. The current and proposed changes to the plan both still permit that.

Do you think an oligarchy is ok as long as the attorneys are the elite group?

"The people opposed to the Missouri Plan are mostly right wing fanatics who want to have the power to vote a judge out of office if they don't agree with the verdicts they pass down."

They already can- Retention elections and impeachment by the House. I don’t know of any proposals that would change that.

Bill Placke's proposal does not suggest direct election of judges. It is more like the federal plan. Do you have a problem with the federal plan?

If you haven’t reviewed Mr. Placke’s proposal, here’s a link. St. Louis Attorney Offers “New Missouri Plan

1/10/2008 11:47 AM  
Anonymous Socrates said...

Your links don't work.

Placke's plan increases the role of partisanship and money in the process.

Thank you for the advice on commenting. I don't really want to be like you when I grow up, though.

1/10/2008 11:55 AM  
Anonymous Whistleblowme said...

Really? Really???? You wanted to make the argument that members tend to support their organizations, and the only example you could come up with is al Qaeda? And then you claim you're trying NOT to be offensive?!

I hope this doesn't come off as uncivil, but what kind of lowlife lying scumbag are you?

1/10/2008 12:07 PM  
Blogger whistleblower said...

Socrates...

Sorry about the hyperlink. They used to work. Here is the direct URL for the Chip Robertson article:

http://mopns.com/2007/12/28/chip-robertson-working-with-gun-rights-opponents-radical-critics-of-general-petraus-and-worlds-wealthiest-radical-activists/

and Placke's proposal:

http://mopns.com/2007/11/06/st-louis-attorney-offers-new-missouri-plan/

As you can see, I would have no reason for not properly linking you to something I want you to read.

whistleblowme...

"and the only example you could come up with is al Qaeda? And then you claim you're trying NOT to be offensive?!"

Honestly, I didn't think about it that much. I now realize that the reader would automatically consider my intent to be offensive. (Not because it directly is, but because it is an available conclusion) I whole-heartedly apologize. If I could do so, I would gladly replace it with a reference that you would consider more suitable.

1/10/2008 12:26 PM  
Blogger whistleblower said...

Test of hyperlinks

Democrats

Daily Kos

Hyperlinks do still work. Must have been a glitch at blogger.com. Strange how the oligarchy hyperlink worked without a problem, but the others automatically changed to a https://www.blogger.com/"

1/10/2008 1:35 PM  

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