Saturday, July 24, 2021

Duty

Police have a duty to act when a crime is occurring. They cannot ignore it. Even if the perpetrator is a fellow police officer. Yet, rarely, if ever, are police officers punished for failure to act when the person committing the crime is a fellow officer. 

Lawyers have a duty to report violations of the lawyers rules of professional conduct. Yet, rarely, if ever, are lawyers punished for failure to report when the person committing the violation is a fellow attorney. Indeed, as far as I can tell, no lawyer in Minnesota has ever been punished for failure to report a violation of the lawyers rules of professional conduct. 

If cops and lawyers are above the law and their own rules, is it any wonder why we have bad cops and lawyers?  

Sunday, July 18, 2021

New Site - LegalReformMN.org

I have created an offshoot site to DivorceInjustice.org called LegalReformMN.org which has the narrow purpose of informing the public of the unethical and criminal actions of several public officials related to my case. I dislike calling people out by name but the people in question, namely Ramsey county attorney John Choi, his criminal division director Richard Dusterhoft as well as judges William Leary III and Mark Ireland, have all acted with callus disregard to the law and principles of justice and equality under the law. They deserve to be removed from office for their actions if not outright prosecuted. Note that unlike Divorceinjustice.org, LegalReformMN.org uses real name. 

The problem with corruption in the legal system goes way beyond family law. It is the reason bad cops like Derek Chauvin can remain as police officers despite a long history of using his position to abuse people. It is the justification people use to commit crimes - after all if the judges and lawyers who are suppose to ensure justice are themselves committing crimes and getting away with them why would we expect anyone to follow the law? Corruption in the legal system undermines the very foundation of our society. Sadly such corruption is so common it has become normalized within our system of justice. 

I hope my efforts will shed some light on how bad the situation is and motivate at least a few people to change the system for the better. Time will tell. 

Thursday, July 8, 2021

Rudy Giuliani Suspended

Rudy Giuliani has now had his law license suspended in both New York and Washington. D.C.  According to the New York state appellate court said there was "uncontroverted evidence" that Giuliani "communicated demonstrably false and misleading statement to courts, lawmakers and the public at large in his capacity as lawyer" for Trump and his campaign "in connection with Trump's failed effort at reelection in 2020."

It is quite rare that a lawyer's license to practice is suspended without at least an arrest if not a a criminal conviction. It is nice to see that it sometimes does happen. I only wish it happened for less prominent figures such as Nelly Wince when they just as clearly and egregiously break the lawyers rules of professional conduct. 

In the immediate aftermath of 911, the vast majority of Americans had a positive impression of Giuliani. He was even named Time's person of the year. Yet there as always something a bit off about him. His own aides said the most dangerous place in New York was between a microphone and Giuliani's mouth. 

About 8 years ago Giuliani gave a speak at a leadership conference at work. At the time I had a fairly favorable impression of him. However his speech was a bit strange. Quite egotistical and not very respectful of the law. So even though I was shocked by his total meltdown over the last few years, I was perhaps less so than many. 

Friday, July 2, 2021

Attorney Gives Advise On How To Get Away With Murder

I have often talked about the fact that Lawyers Professional Responsibility Boards more often work to shield lawyers from violations of the law and their professional rules than actually enforce the rules and discipline lawyers for misconduct. Well, surprise surprise, in Nashville a lawyer named Winston Bradshaw Sitton was actually disciplined. He was suspended for giving legal advise on how to get away with murder. His suspension? A measly four years. Four years for offering legal advise on how to actually get away with murder in our legal system. I guess something is better than nothing but really four years?  The kicker is that Sitton thought he did absolutely nothing wrong. 

ABC reported on the case. Here is the summary:

Attorney Winston Bradshaw Sitton reportedly wrote that if the woman wanted to kill her ex-boyfriend, she should "lure" him into her home and "claim" he broke in with intent to do her harm and she feared for her life, according to the Tennessee Supreme Court judgment.

Sitton, whose Facebook page described him as a lawyer, also emphasized in the comment that his advice was given "as a lawyer" and that if she was "remotely serious" she should delete the thread, because it could be used as proof of premeditation against her in trial, the court documents state.

"If you want to kill him, then lure him into your house and claim he broke in with intent to do you bodily harm and that you feared for your life," he wrote. "Even with the new stand your ground law, the castle doctrine is a far safer basis for use of deadly force."

Thursday, June 24, 2021

Persistent Misconceptions About Alimony

There is a persistent misconception that alimony is compensation provided to a wife for her raising the children while the husband pursued a career. There is little, if any evidence to support this. Indeed, there is much to refute it. 


The book, The Marriage Buyout: The Troubled Trajectory of U.S. Alimony Law by Cynthia Lee Starnes (which I have not read) seems to support this notion if you look at it's conclusion posted online:

Many  of  the  primary  caregivers  at  work  in  today’s  homes  are  going  about their business unaware that if their marriages end they are likely to become the law’s suckers, set free to alone bear the long-term costs of  the  role  they  thought  was  part  of  marital  teamwork.  Archaic  alimony  laws  are  to  blame.  Alimony  is  often  the  only  available  tool  for  ensuring that divorce does not impose all the long-term costs of marital  roles  on  caregivers  while  freeing  the  other  spouse  to  enjoy  all  the  long-term benefits. Yet in its current incarnation, alimony is not up to the  task  before  it.  Beset  by  myths,  disdain,  and  neglect,  the  law  of  alimony  inspires  orders  that  are  unpredictable,  inconsistent,  short-lived,  and uncommon. Alimony’s problems are exacerbated by the absence of any contemporary rationale to justify its existence in an age of no-fault divorce and supposed gender equality. Concerned commentators have offered  an  array  of  alimony  theories  and  reform  proposals,  but  none  has  carried  the  day.  Meanwhile,  grassroots  alimony  reform  groups  in  numerous  states  are  working  hard  to  publicize  alimony  horror  stories  and promote legislative reform to limit alimony, most recently succeeding in Massachusetts

In my own case the court ordered custody evaluator concluded that Spring was not the primary caregiver during the marriage and the vocational evaluator concluded she could make just as much money as me. Yet she was able to walk away from the marriage with well over half the assets (none of which represented her earnings), no responsibility for the children whatsoever, and massive alimony income. 

96% of alimony payers are men. Women do not stay home to raise children 96% of the time. 

As I stated, Spring, received far more than half of marital assets at the time of divorce with no responsibility for the children. Even if somehow she deserved more why was that not handled as at the time of the divorce rather than through alimony? Two reasons:

  1. Lawyers and the whole divorce industry make far more money if the divorce drags on. 
  2. Misogynistic beliefs that women are unable to handle money so need an income rather than a settlement.  

Friday, June 18, 2021

A Thought

Most people I know, and I suspect most readers of this site, would agree that the reason blacks are over-represented in prison is due to societal racism not because blacks are inherently more likely to commit crimes. Yet, how many people would say the same about the male population being over-represented vs. females?

Food for thought. 


Friday, June 11, 2021

Divorce Statistics

A reader sent me some really interesting divorce statistics:

  • 900,000 people divorce each year nationwide;  18,000 avg. per state/year.
  • 600,000 ex-spouses pay alimony (IRS 2017**); 96% are men, 4% women estimated.

    • 19,000 alimony payers have $0 annual income.
    • 351,000 alimony payers have annual incomes $1 - $100,000.
    • 210,000 alimony payers have annual incomes over $100,000.
    • $12.7 billion annual alimony payments (IRS 2017), calculates to $21,200 avg. alimony payer/year.
    • A majority of alimony payers live on 1/3rd or less of their gross income in a subsistence life style.
    • Big picture, there are so few alimony payers in the US with 12,000 avg. per state, no meaningful alimony reform is likely in the foreseeable future.

  • 300,000 couples over age 50 divorce annually, and in 2030 will balloon to more than 400,000 busted marriages.
  • 16% of divorce cases request alimony; given in 6-15% approx. or 150,000 cases per year.
  • 85% of the time wives begin the divorce proceedings as they want out, and some do it for the security of the money while getting rid of you.  The result after divorce, most parties get screwed.

    • Post-divorce 100% of alimony payers experience a drop in their lifestyle standards.  Those with incomes less than $100,000/year really suffer as they cannot afford to live on 1/3 of their gross salary.
    • The recipient ex-spouse who was fortunate enough to divorce a payer spouse with an income over $100,000/year, generally may have an increased lifestyle (as 25%+/- cohabitate) often with another mate on $100K plus, with a nicer house, more expensive food, and nicer vacations after the divorce.
  • Child Support:
    • 85% of custodial parents are mothers, and 45% of children living with a divorced mother live at or near the poverty line. 
    • Only 50% of custodial parents are awarded child support, and only 45% receive the full amount.
    • $28.8 billion annual child support collected for 15.6 million children (2017 OSCE report), or $1850/ child in IV-D program.
    • $7 billion (27%) of the money collected annually for child support is spent by federal and state Child Support Enforcement agencies for enforcement.  (2009 OCSE report).
    • There is $89 billion in uncollected or past due child support.
    • 11,000 approximate child support-related suicides annually, and alimony-related suicides TBD.

Divorce is a $50 billion/year nationwide business spent on CS/alimony payments and legal expenses, with the courts spending $21 billion/year of the total.  This is why the avg. divorce costs $50,000.

**   The 2017 IRS archive records show 600,000 alimony payers who listed alimony as a tax deduction on their 1040 tax form filings, but this count includes both permanent and limited term alimony payers.  To clarify, the 600,000 payers we are considering are alimony only, and do not include child support.  So let's say of the reported total paying alimony, the best low estimate is that 50% of the 600,000 are permanent payers, so there are 300,00 - 500,000 permanent alimony payers nationwide.

Great, although quite disturbing information. 

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