Saturday, September 7, 2013



                          BEFORE IT HAPPENS.


          Now, you can say what you like about my father.
          (Just don`t say it in front of me).
           I didn`t always like him, and he certainly didn`t always care for me, but if a leader is someone who keeps his people safe, then  he was a leader. And there`s not too much
you can say against that now, is there?

IMAGINED SCENARIO:        If our fourteen families know we`re untouchable, but we suspect a 32nd cousin we`ve never met - if we know this distant cousin might be dragged off into the night, tortured and murdered some time before dawn...
        Well, how safe do we really feel?

        The only element in our lives that protects us... and that
protects us without fail: it is the DUE PROCESS OF THE
         We can make fun of lawyers all we like, and God knows we like to... and I like to, too... But I have been a lawyer,
and only after practising and at the same time making fun
of the practice.... only after a considerable time
appearing in Criminal Court and keeping my stupid violent friends, and my crazy associates.. and myself out of jail...
         And also, only after protecting various helpless people - helpless because (eg: she loved her husband utterly... helpless because he was enslaved to his wife unmercifully... after protecting such people by arguing for their situations... only then...
        Only then did I realize... this was no joke!
         The criminal defence lawyer is a hero, or ought to be.              We should not make fun of him or her... this person, if he is doing his job, this person is working
THE THIN EDGE OF THE WEDGE... on your behalf.
          And if we pay him/her plenty, good! A defence attorney
who is not lazy, careless, and suffering from some
variety of "moral turpetude"... this person is your last, your penultimate, defence against a government that has degenerated into arrogant and insolent brutality.

           Now I have always been a physically strong
individual. I have defended bike gangs and stupid
brutes of all persuasion... and I have gotten most of them
off with light sentences... if I felt that was what they deserved...
            I usually believe jail, incarceration behind steel bars, is such a medieval torture that we don`t
need to inflict this stupidity upon our civilization.
            BUT.... the last line of defence.... the ULTIMATE
defence we as a people have is... a DECENT judge
who is not afraid to rule with kindness.
             That applies to all legal workers, too - a decent cop,
a decent defence lawyer...and... PLEASE tell me there are some decent prosecutors.... I`m sure there are some. I just
can`t remember  any... all the ones I have known have been
in such a breathless, gasping hurry to move up the monkey ladder of success...
             To get promoted!.. To get a bigger wage and  more public accolades in  newspapers... This can`t be true of them all! 
             Please tell me there are some decent, fair, non- sycophantic prosecutors!
           But judges, judges I am not so worried about...(unless the judge is in thrall to some dark force). Most judges are decent guys, however misguided some decisions
end up being... most of these people actually attempt justice.
         I have met some fools, but I have met mostly decent judges... And I have encountered some judges
who are approaching sainthood.

        So what is the ISSUE here?  The issue is - we seem to
be degenerating into FASCIST times.

        A lawyer I used to know and respect was Edwin A. Goodman, lead partner in Goodman and Goodman,Barristers and Solicitors, Toronto. He was almost family.
        I asked Eddie, "How do you do it?" (Because the guy seemed brilliant to me) " What is the most important thing?
How is it -  the way you hone in so quickly? How do you decide - immediately - exactly what to argue, in order to win a case?"
        Eddie said: " You`ve go to look at the situation and
study it, and read all the circumstances... and when you know you`ve covered it, you`ve got to stand back... you`ve got to  almost intuit - then choose THE ISSUE... Then that`s what you work with...that`s what you argue...when you know what the case is really about."
         The other guys I knew well...because I was fortunate enough to work in their office...I knew  some of the lawyers in Davis, Webb and Holindrake, Brampton. I used to enjoy those guys, a fine bunch of fellas they were. And Tom
Dunn was one of them, and Ron Webb was another. Tom
Dunn is now a judge, and Ron Webb deserves to be sitting
somewhere close to the right hand of God, if he`s still alive,
which I hope he is.
          I`m not going to identify the other guys, because I have some discretion, but let me say, there wasn`t a dud in the house.
         Hollindrake was swearing an affidavit for me one time.
I said, "Yes. I swear that`s my signature."
          The experienced, strong-willed and mostly truthful man
looked piercingly  into my eyes through his glasses and
said: "You are swearing to the truth of the statement...
not just as to your signature."
           It was not a pleasant moment for me. I looked a bit of a fool. Of course, he was right. He was stating the obvious.
But it was a principle, in my hurry, I`d forgotten. I was swearing to the truth of my statement. This is not an
empty idea.

          Now how do I judge a lawyer? By competence first, yes. But not by how many victories he`s had in Court.... (Although victories don`t hurt if you`re keeping people out of jail, people who deserve to be free).  I judge a lawyer by
how decent a person he is, and how decent he is to others...
not just in Court. And whether he`s competent to help me.
            I stopped doing family law because of all the
endless opportunities that exist there to screw a whole family over... I`m not always a good person... And when I`m working
for an attractive wife against a monstrous husband.... there are too many opportunities... to act out my evil nature..  I`m not that much of a shit, but, boy, I wanted to be. 
            Cross-examining some poor dildo of a husband -
who  has been a fool, but perhaps he has also been
manipulated by his wife.... if the guy has worked for his family for five years - I can`t cross-examine him properly.
It`s too easy to screw him. And I won`t do it!
             And it`s too easy to screw the wife, also.
             It`s primarily family law - husbands with shotguns,
shooting lawyers - it is this situation that necessitated
metal detectors at the entrance to the Courts in Toronto.
                        Real estate, Criminal Law, no problem. But I will
not practice family law. It is important to know your limitations.

                        I once asked Ron Webb.... we were before the OMB
(Ontario Municipal Board). I was his assistant attorney.
There were many millions at stake... It was a licensing
 matter. And I couldn`t catch his technique. I was merely
trying to learn and I thought there must be some clever devices involved.
            How was he being so persuasive? HOW was he
doing it? He was winning the case, and I didn`t know what
EDGE   he was using, what technique... what angle...
            After he won the case, I asked him. I know this might
sound naive, but it`s not. I asked him how did he do it? How did he win this case and so many others? Why did people keep hiring him for huge fees?
          He said:" It`s simple. I just go into Court and I OUT-HONEST everyone else. I use honesty.
That`s my trick. That`s my secret. It never fails."

             All I can say, when I think of that answer, is: "WOW!"
              That is not the answer I expected to get from a top-earning Canadian attorney. But he wasn`t kidding. He was not lying to me.  I watched him in action closely many times. I was right beside him and I saw no sign of falsehood.
           This honesty approach -  he meant it!   He did courtroom law that way.  And he was  a winner!!! Big time,
a winner!

            Now the purpose of the article. An ISSUE has come up.  The ISSUE IS - certain individuals in North America have
been given the "authority" to order the deaths of other individuals,without a trial and without due process - is this legal?
             Several people have asked me this question. To be
honest, a LOT of people have asked me this question.
(And who am I? I`m just a former decent man lawyer...
with a criminal record, which I ought to get expunged...)
           I`m a good lawyer who discovered he is a great rhythm guitar player. But people still ask me questions
such as this. And I take the role seriously. It is my duty to do so. In some respects, in this instance, I am the court of last resort.

                 The simple, correct and unimpeachable answer to the above question is this:

LEGAL STATEMENT:          " In no circumstances, even under a situation of war or alleged war, may one man order the death of another man without proper trial and due process under the law."   
         (In this instance, "man" includes and also means, "woman" or "person")                      END OF STATEMENT
            This is the principal a democracy is founded upon. We are not living under a King. We are living under the Rule of Law.
                 There is just no legal way to do it, and never can
be any legal way to do it: to give an innocent person the power of life and death over another innocent person.
                 Any man who orders the death of another man without due process... such a man is guilty of  and
ought to be be tried and found guilty of murder. 
                  There is no statutory limitation for murder.

                 This answer will not please my fascist friends
or my biker clients.
                  But "Dem`s da facts, Jojo!"

                   Such a power, if it existed, would negate
every basic principle that a democracy is founded upon.
                    Such a power can never be ratified by law.
                     Such a power is always impeachable.

                     If you want to know my background. I`m a student of Constitutional law. I was lucky enough to
study three years with Dr. Lederman, Queens University,
                      The only prize I ever received, informally
or formally, was a prize for essays and lectures in the study of the Sociology of Law ---  they didn`t have a proper name
for this study at that time.
                     I prefer to call this study: JURISPRUDENCE.

                     And... brothers and sisters in law school,
and you, comrads, who have passed the Bar...
encourage your sons and daughters, your legal lovers
and friends - encourage them to study this subject
which is still undefined.

                   And in so doing, let us say: 
                   "GOD BLESS THE AMERICAS!"  

                    Lord, help us make them sound.                  
                                  * * * * * * * *


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