Sunday, June 28, 2020

South Carolina Alimony Reform

As I have often mentioned, most people just do not understand how alimony works. Nor how bad it is even when crime is not involved as in my case.  When I tell people that I have to pay alimony until I die, they often express disbelief that permanent even alimony exists.  This example from South Carolina says it all:
My 66 year old husband has been forced to pay alimony to a woman he married at age 19.  They were married 7 years and did not have any children.  Since their divorce, his ex-wife has lived continuously with the same man for almost 40 years!  South Carolina law still demands, from his divorce settlement, that he pay her for the rest of his life.  
What makes this all the more terrible is that my husband has advanced heart disease.  He has had numerous heart attacks and was forced to take disability from his job, that he loved, in 2011.  So, even though he has been disabled, he is still required to pay this woman.  All this while his ex wife and her boyfriend flaunt, in local articles, their wealth, European travel and hobbies.
This is as real as it gets. If you are in South Carolina, please support South Carolina Alimony Reform.

Sunday, June 21, 2020

Black Live Matter/All Lives Matter

I head a really good explanation as to why the retort of some people to the phrase "Black Lives Matter", which makes some non-black people uncomfortable, should not be "All Lives Matter".

Imagine a person wearing a "save the whales" t-shirt. Someone sees it and says no, "save the animals". Such a reaction is non-nonsensical.  The issue I think is that non-black people are not a third party such as whales so they misconstrue the statement "Black Lives Matter" to be "Black Lives Matter More" which is just nonsense.

I am heartened to see many white people here in Minnesota wearing "Black Lives Matter" t-shirts. If we ensure justice for black people, which I believe can only be accomplished through true legal reform,  it will help ensure justice for all. Maybe even me. Yes, black lives do matter.

Sunday, June 14, 2020

George Floyd's Death Could Save Us All

The tragic murder of George Floyd could, if we as a society have the will, save us all. To do so we need to do more, much more, than just prosecute the person who killed Floyd; we need to change the legal system that has historically ignored criminal activity within law enforcement.

Here is the problem. If you are a violent or raciest (or both) person you are naturally drawn to work in an area where you can freely express these tendencies without repercussion. Sadly, the best place to do that in our society is law enforcement. I am not saying all police officers are violent or raciest, they are not. But it is not just the officers who commit the crimes who are guilty. Those who witness or know of such actions and do nothing share the guilt. The so called "code of silence" is nothing more than criminal conspiracy. The institution itself not just a few individuals is the problem. 

Clearly crime and corruption is a problem within law enforcement. How do we fix it? I think we have conclusively proven that having black and other minority mayors, police chiefs and city counsels does not work. Nor do I think that better laws is the answer because the laws we have are actually pretty good. The solution, I am convinced, lies in the third branch of government - the judiciary.

The reality is that our judicial system is too often where crime occurs not where justice is ensured. As a society we casually accept this. Think about what is meant when someone says they have a good lawyer. What they really mean is they have a connected lawyer. A lawyer who knows the judge so you can get out of that DUI. It should not matter who the lawyer knows. It should not matter how much money you pay the lawyer. Only the facts should matter. But that is simply not the reality we live in. The legal system is supposed to be blind as to your race, religion, sexual orientation, national heritage, how wealthy you are and even who you know. But it is not. 

Even when lawyers unquestionably commit crimes as Nelly Wince did in my case, it is is ignored by legal system. Judge Mearly, who admitted to knowing Wince personally, ignored it.   The Lawyers professional Responsibility Board ignored it as they do in nearly all complaints agaisnt attorneys. The county attorney's office went so far to state, in writing, that there is no law agaisnt a lawyer lying in court and that the term "fraud upon the court" does not exit in Minnesota statutes. Both statements are  not only false but outrageously false. What they should have stated is that in Minnesota lawyers are allowed to commit crimes with impunity. Just like violent and racist people find a home in the police force, people who enjoy criminal fraud find a safe, welcoming and financially rewarding environment in the legal system.

Trying to fix crime and corruption in law enforcement without addressing the institutionalized crime and corruption in our legal system is akin to putting a small bandage on a cut artery. It won't work. But if we do change the legal system to make it fair and equitable then perhaps George Flyod's tragic death with save us all.

Sunday, June 7, 2020

Will Smith - Racism Is Not Getting Worse, It Is Getting Filmed

An important element to the ongoing protests over police racism is that it is nothing new. In fact it is not even getting worse. As Will Smith states, "Racism is not getting worse, it's getting filmed"

An important lesson here is that the the power of transparency can be transformational. Let's hope so anyway. Yet transparency alone does not work.  Progress also requires that people care. As we have seen since George Floyd's murder, people do care about police abuse.

Sadly my experience with the legal system is that even with transparency (i.e. the evidence I have) lawyers are able to get away with crimes because no one, or more correctly not enough people, care. So crime continues unabated. 

I hope those guilty of George Floyd's death are held accountable for their actions in court. But I suspect it might take protests just as large or even larger that the recent ones against police abuse of power before the judiciary acts according to the law.

Sunday, May 31, 2020

The Root Cause of the Minneapolis Riots

Most people would ascribe the cause of the riots this weekend in Minneapolis and around the country to racism against black men. (I suppose that would technically be racism and sexism against black men)  Although clearly there is racism against black men in this country, I think the true root cause is deeper.

Last Monday George Floyd was killed while being detained by a Minneapolis police officer. "Detained" is too nice of a word. Floyd lay on the ground while the officer knelt on his neck until he died. Three other officers watched but did not intervene.

The death sparked massive peaceful protests as well as rioting which included arson, looting and wanton destruction. Many of the business destroyed were minority and family owned. It was incredibly sad to see. 

It is especially disheartening because I live in the Twin Cities. In St. Paul, my hometown, we have a black mayor and a city council dominated by minorities. Which as a minority majority city, is a good representation of the population. Minneapolis has a black police chief and has in the past had a black mayor. Many police officers and other government officials are are black or minority. We like to think of ourselves as above racism. But we are not. We actually have some of the worst disparities between minorities and whites in education, employment and standard of living.

But it was not racism that caused George Floyd's death. It was the reality that some people are immune or nearly immune from criminal actions. Most police officers are good. But the bad ones soon find out that it is a great career if you like to be a bully and criminal because you are nearly immune from prosecution. Just like lawyers in family court soon find out that they can commit fraud with impunity. In both cases evidence rarely of ever matters.

When people do not believe that the law is fairly and equally applied, they lose respect for the law. The result? An increase in crime every day and explosive riots every so often.

We need equality under the law. We need rule of law.

Saturday, May 23, 2020

Family Court Corruption is Real

Family court corruption is real and it negatively affects all parties in a divorce - men, women, and children as well as society as a whole. It increases crime throughout society because crime in the court is the most effective way to demonstrate to the public that we do not live in a free and just society. The justice system is the final recourse for justice within the law. When it fails, rule of law fails.

Many within the legal system will admit there are a few bad lawyers but they tend to think of them as the exception. They will also admit that such lawyers are rarely punished but will dismiss that by stating that no system is perfect.

The problem, however, is not small. It is huge. In family court fraud and perjury are endemic. A fact that every lawyer working in family court knows. And any officer of the court, which includes all lawyers, who reasonably suspects that another officer of the court broke the rules of processional conduct must report it. That rarely if ever happens. This is the why I can confidently state the family court system, at least in Minnesota, is institutionally corrupt.

Sunday, May 17, 2020

The Hardest Thing

The hardest thing for me about my case is not that Spring left me, or even that she committed fraud and perjury. Her actions were not too surprising as her moral compass had been steadily degrading throughout our marriage.  It isn't even how much she hurt the children although this I admit causes me greater distress.

Nor is the hardest thing that Nelly Wince committed fraud and acted unethically. Nor is it that the judges, lawyers, the marriage counselor, and others acted unethically and in many cases criminally as well.

The hardest thing is not about the failings of any individual The hardest part is that the justice system as a whole utterly failed to provide even a semblance of justice. Clear criminal actions and violations of the rules of professional conduct were ignored and often overtly covered up. As I stated before, all lawyers who even see the evidence against Nelly Wince had and continue to have a duty to report it, but not a single one did.

When the justice system itself fails, it causes more damage to society than any other crime. Without rule of law and equality under the law, the foundation of democracy crumbles.

There is a reason this site is subtitled, "Unethical and Criminal Behavior in the Divorce Industry".