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Archive for the ‘law’ Category

Louisiana Supreme Court states that the right to an attorney only applies if you state a request for an attorney in standard English. Speak Spanish? Tough shit. Speak vernacular Creole? Tough shit.

I mean, look. Gotta send them darkies to prison, y’all. You know they’re all criminals, after all. As for the Constitution? Yeah, well, according to the U.S. Constitution, the amount of justice you receive isn’t supposed to be different based upon the language that you speak (that whole “equal protection of the law” thingy in the 14th Amendment). But hey, the Constitution is just a piece of paper, right? Right?!

And people wonder why I would never move back to Louisiana even if I had a million bajillion dollars and was wanting to start up a business… shit, their “justice” system is so goddamn corrupt, it’s worse than India. Like in India, if the rich and powerful who control the state decide they want your shit, they’ll use corrupt D.A.’s and judges to take it. At least in India the judges will take bribes to stop the process. In Louisiana, the judges are basically selected by the rich and powerful, so they just rubber stamp whatever the rich and powerful in the state want rubber stamped. It’s a “justice” system, not a justice system.

– Badtux the Corruption Penguin

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There are multiple lawsuits claiming that Trump is in violation of the Emoluments Clause of the Constitution. Right now, a judge is trying to decide whether the litigants in one of those lawsuits have standing to proceed, i.e., that they were directly impacted by the President’s violation of the fundamental law of the country. If no standing, then no lawsuit.

But let’s say that the judge does rule that the litigants have standing. And let’s say that eventually Trump is found by the court to be in violation. Then what?

Well: not what the proponents of these lawsuits are claiming.

First of all, the lawsuits aren’t going to remove His Fraudulency Donald the Trump from office. There is only one provision in the Constitution for removing a President from office: impeachment. Secondly, the lawsuits aren’t going to put Hillary Clinton in office. If Trump is harassed by the lawsuits enough he might resign, and of course he could be impeached by Congress, but either way the Constitution is clear: Say hello to President Pence, R-Handmaid’s Tale.

So what can the lawsuits accomplish? Well, lawsuits award damages. Lawsuits can also include court orders to cease and desist. In this case, damages are going to be the actual losses of those who lost business due to Trump’s violation of the Emoluments Clause. Identifying how much business was lost is likely to require a Special Master to look at the books of Trump’s businesses to determine how much of their income is coming from foreign sources now as versus from before he was President, and then distribution of the excess foreign income to surrounding businesses in the same field of business who presumably were harmed by the violation of the emoluments clause. It could also include a court order ordering the Trump businesses to cease and desist accepting business from foreign sources, and, if the Trump businesses violate that order, could even involved seizing the Trump businesses, selling them at auction, and then giving the Trumps any excess left over from liquidating the businesses (ie, likely $0, since any money remaining likely would go to pay creditors).

All of that is a real long shot, but here’s the thing: None of that would result in ex-President Trump. Trump would still be President. He would still have the many opportunities for enrichment of a President and, once he leaves office, all the opportunities that ex-Presidents get. Frankly, given how heavily indebted his businesses are, he might even be relieved if a court seized them and sold them at auction. It would save him the trouble of declaring bankruptcy (again) and give him a handy scapegoat to use for his next money-making venture, “I didn’t go bankrupt, a fake judge took all my properties away!”.

And that’s the *worst* case. The most likely case is that this is going to drag on for years and years and years, and then President Trump is going to leave office (either voluntarily or because he had a massive coronary) and the lawsuits will basically end up dropped as moot.

Under *no* circumstances will Trump be removed from office by these lawsuits.

Under *no* circumstances will Hillary Clinton be installed as President by these lawsuits.

At best, they are a nuisance to Trump. Furthermore, given the current makeup of Congress, Trump could basically eliminate the lawsuits in a minute by having Congress make a law saying his businesses can accept foreign money. The Constitution does give Congress the right to do that.

In short, the lawsuits are pointless, other than as yet another way to harass a sitting President. Of course, turnabout is fair play — these lawsuits at least have more possibility of standing than the hundreds of lawsuits about Obama’s birth certificate. But beyond that… there’s no there, there.

– Badtux the Law Penguin

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The U.S. Supreme Court has never ruled that you have a right to drive on a public highway without a driver’s license or valid vehicle registration.

Never.

Not ever.

This is not controversial, unless you are a sovereign citizen dimwit, in which case you spew, “Thompson vs Smith! Campbell versus Walker!”

Really?

Thompson vs. Smith was a Virginia state court case in 1930. The question there was whether a police officer or judge could revoke someone’s driver’s license without cause. The Virginia Supreme Court said no — due process rights were vested in a driver’s license, and it could only be revoked for cause via due process. Thompson vs. Smith did *not* state that there was a right to drive upon a public highway without a driver’s license. Rather, it ruled that your driver’s license could not be revoked arbitrarily without cause because that violated due process rights under the Virginia constitution.

Campbell vs. Walker was a Delaware state court case in 1910 and was about whether Walker was negligent when his automobile struck Campbell’s wagon. Both vehicles had a right to be on the road in question because Delaware at the time had no licensing or registration laws, that was mentioned solely in passing while attempting to determine the question of negligence. Walker was sued to pay for Campbell’s medical bills and the wagon. The question before the court was the standards for proving negligence, not whether either party was in compliance with drivers’ licensing laws — there were none in Delaware at the time. At no time did the court rule upon the constitutionality of Delaware’s (at the time non-existent) driver’s licensing law, it was strictly a vehicle liability case and attempting to determine the evidence needed in order to prove liability in such cases.

I stand by my statement: The U.S. Supreme Court has never ruled that you have a right to drive on a public highway without a driver’s license or valid vehicle registration.

Never.

Not ever.

– Badtux the “Man, these people are stupid” Penguin

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Canada’s CBC News warns Canadians not to carry much money south of the border because the police will steal it.

Used to be, only corrupt 3rd world nations had police that would just blatantly steal your money. Guess that means we’re one of those, now. The problem is, corruption on that scale is bad for business. Tourists decide to take their money elsewhere, somewhere where it won’t get stolen. Businessmen whose businesses churn a lot of cash decide to invest their money elsewhere, not in the United States. And so forth.

The modest reforms that Congress is proposing will not end the corruption, but will at least reduce some of the incentives behind it. In the end, the U.S. Supreme Court is going to have to rule that the 4th Amendment is, in fact, the 4th Amendment, and prohibits seizing things without a warrant and probable cause. Until then, police departments will continue to steal more money than thieves.

Yeah, well, I’m not holding my breath on that one, not with this Supreme Court…

– Badtux the 3rd World Penguin

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At least, for the purposes of voting. Apparently the U.S. Supreme Court is going back to the future again, voting for state-mandated racial segregation (at least for the purposes of voting), 61 years after it overturned that decision. Except without even the fig leaf of “separate but equal” to cover for their blatantly racist decision.

For those of you who voted for Jill Stein, thus putting the Orange Racist Pussy Grabber into office… are you satisfied?

Oh wait, you’re all lily white anyhow, so why would you care about minority rights, hmm?

– Badtux the Law Penguin

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HIPAA is the law here in the United States. It is a Federal law that protects patient privacy and prevents hospitals from releasing information about patients and that has very few exceptions. Basically, these are the exceptions:

  1. The transfer of patient information is necessary in order to provide appropriate medical care to the patient.
  2. The patient or, if the patient is unconscious, the patient’s next of kin, gives consent.
  3. The patient is under arrest and in the custody of the State.
  4. The police have a warrant for the medical records or medical procedure being requested.

If a nurse violates this law by, say, allowing a police officer to draw blood from a comatose patient without any of the above, she will at the very least be suspended, if not fired and have her license yanked by the state licensing board. Hospitals take this shit seriously. Not only is it the law, it’s their duty to their patients.

So anyhow, this cop by the name of Detective Jeff Payne demanded of the burn unit head nurse, Alex Wubbels, that she allow him to draw vials of blood from a patient for drug screening. He didn’t have consent from the patient. The patient was not under arrest. He had no warrant, he couldn’t get a warrant because there was no probable cause because the patient was the victim of a crash caused by a fleeing criminal and was not himself accused of any crime. From what I can figure, this detective wanted the blood in order to prove that the patient, a reserve police officer, was not under the influence of drugs at the time that the criminal’s car jumped the median and smashed into his truck.

Thing is, none of that allows the nurse to allow him into the patient’s room, much less perform a medical procedure. He’s not next of kin. He has no warrant. The person in the room is not in the custody of the State i.e. is not under arrest. Under HIPAA she’s not even allowed to tell him what room the patient is in without permission from the patient or the patient’s next of kin. So he’s demanding she break the law, and she puts in a phone call to the hospital’s administrator and puts the administrator on speakerphone to talk with the officer, and the administrator explains the exact same thing to the officer, i.e., that the nurse is not allowed under the law to tell him anything about the patient or allow him to do anything to the patient unless one of those last three conditions is true. At which point the officer goes fucking postal on the nurse, jacking her up and hustling her out the door and cuffing her because she’s there and the administrator wasn’t, apparently.

As far as I know, he still didn’t get his fucking blood, because hospital administrators were already on the way with lawyers in tow and put a stop to that shit. He was forced to let Nurse Wubbels go, and slunk away.

And his police department didn’t even give him a fucking paid vacation. They took him off of the phlebotomy program, of course. No fucking way was any hospital in the Salt Lake City area going to give him the time of day again. But hey, reprimand? Nope, didn’t happen. Suspension? Nope, didn’t happen. It’s almost as if a cop can just fucking assault anybody anywhere at any time for any stupid reason and the command staff just shrugs and says, “what can we do?”

Y’know, twenty years ago when the original “militia” neo-Nazi movements were breaking up in the aftermath of the Oklahoma City bombing, David Neiwert was committing acts of journalism and publishing articles tracking where all these fucking Nazis were going. What he found out was that a lot of them were getting hired by police departments that were busy staffing up due to Bill Clinton’s program to put 100,000 additional cops onto the streets and which correspondingly had lowered standards and didn’t look too hard at those people. Thus the FBI warnings about neo-Nazi infiltration of police departments. So anyhow, it’s 20 years later now. Those fucking Nazis are no longer just foot soldiers. They’re now in leadership positions in police departments all around the country. Thus the Oath Keepers hate group, which claims over 30,000 law enforcement members.

And this is the result — even the non-Nazis in police departments have absorbed the whole “ve must haff ORDER!” mentality of the Nazis, and disregard the whole law part of the term law and order. We live in a day and age where it doesn’t matter what the law says. It doesn’t matter what the Constitution says.

All that matters is the attitude of the cop that rolls up on you.

And that doesn’t describe a democracy. That describes a police state in all but name.

– Badtux the Sovok Penguin

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Former Sheriff Joe Arpaio of Maricopa County, Arizona, found guilty of criminal contempt for defying a judge’s order to stop targeting brown people. Sheriff Joke is going to jail. Good.

People ask, “how did he stay Sheriff for so long, 24 years, despite all the racist things he did?” Excuse me? He stayed Sheriff for 24 years *because* of his racist policies. All the old white racist retirees from Indiana on the west side of Maricopa County loved the fact that he was “tough on darkies”. The only reason he finally got kicked out is that the old farts are dying out and being replaced by people not quite as racist. That, and he finally ran out of deputies to throw under the bus when the Sheriff’s Department was found guilty of misdeeds, and people got tired of the sideshow.

– Badtux the Racism-smellin’ Penguin

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