Sunday, June 25, 2017

Killers of the Flower Moon

I have written before about Killers of the Flower Moon, the book by David Grann about crimes, including hundreds of murders, of Osage Indians in Oklahoma. The Osage had been repeatedly forced off their land, finally ending on up "worthless" land in Oklahoma. However, the land turned out to be on top of a huge oil field that for a time made the Osage one of the wealthiest people in the world.

I finished the book last week. Not only is it well written and researched but the story is just incredible. But maybe not as incredible to me as to others. Bad people have not gone away, they just find new victims.
They are the faction. O conspiracy,
Shamest thou to show thy dangerous brow by night
When evils are most free? O, then by day
Where wilt thou find a cavern dark enough
To mask thy monstrous visage? Seek none, conspiracy.
Hide it in smiles and affability.
Shakespeare - Julies Cesar Act 3, Scene 1
The parallels to my experience, and I believe my experience was typical, with the divorce industry are stunning:

  • The crimes in both cases were committed for power and money
  • The money was systematically extracted in as many ways as possible. With the Osage, it was often by marrying into an Osage family, inflating prices, fraud, insurance scams and murder. With the divorce industry it is through dishonest marriage, inflated prices and billable hours, extra services, dragging on negotiations, fraud and driving people to suicide
  • The criminals maintained respectability. They were the leading figures in society and included lawyers, prosecutors, and judges. 
  • Widespread conspiracy was standard operating procedure in both cases. 
  • Both men and women committed the crimes. 
It is quite dis-heartrending that such evil not only exists in our society but openly and proudly exists. 

Saturday, June 17, 2017

When Governments Oppress

I have become a fretter. Actually I have been that way for many years now. I quite often wake up at night and fret about my situation for a few hours. Specifically, I fret about the fact I am required to work for the rest of my life to pay people as a reward for criminal actions. In many cases, unquestionably criminal actions.

You might assume that I am most angry with my es-wife Spring but, oddly, that is not the case. In fact, I barely think about her. Sure she committed perjury, fraud and financially abandoned her kids. Worse, actually, she uses them as pawns to get money from me. If she was single she would be in jail for child abandonment. But she is who she is. She has never had much of a moral compass and I obviously failed in all my attempts to steer her onto a better path.

You may also think that what I fret over are the outdated, unfair and, ironically, demeaning to women, alimony laws. I do a bit but not as much as you think. Clearly the laws need to change and I have expended no small amount of effort on trying to get them changed. But in the end, there is a legislative process, albeit a frustratingly slow process, which can get the laws changed.

But what I fret over most is government corruption. Nelly Wince, an officer of the court, was able to unquestionably commit very serious crimes and get away with them. Judge Mearly, The Lawyers Professionally Responsibility Board (LPRB) and the country attorney's office all conspired to protect her. And clearly their actions are not unusual - this is the way the system works. It is blatantly and deeply corrupt.

Such corruption has a wide ranging effect. It isn't like judges, the LPRB and the county attorney limit their corruption to family court. Furthermore, everyone who sees such corruption loses respect for the law.  When the government is corrupt it encourages people to commit crimes. And not just the direct victims of corruption but everyone who sees it. It is truly a threat to our country and society. Just laws and the just enforcement of those laws are the foundation of our society. When that foundation is shaken through government corruption, society suffers.

When governments become the oppressors, it can be opposed via violence or non-violent methods.

Violence can take many forms. The United States was founded by people who took up arms against their government. Others decide to take direct action against the wrongdoers. Other still, commit violence agaisnt themselves.

An example of the latter is the recent suicide of Dr. Jan Nemec, a well know cardiologist and professor who was ordered by a judge from Minnesota to pay nearly half his salary to his ex-wife. In his daughter's words, "he saw an injustice that he could not tolerate".

Then there is the non-violent path. The path I align with.

Non-violent protest can take many forms. Divorce Corp is probably the most well know organization fighting corruption within the divorce system.

Individuals can also contribute to fighting corruption and crime on their own. This is the path I follow. I write this blog, I write the media, I write legislators and government officials. I've written the FBI. Sadly nothing has seemed to work very well. The forces of evil are strong.

But there is another option. One that has been used successfully in situations analogous to mine. A hunger strike. In the early days of the suffragette movement, many women in both the United Kingdom and the Unites States went on huger strikes. Many died. In the Indian independence movement hunger strikes were widely used. Ireland has a long history of using huger strike to protest injustice.

A hunger strike is powerful because it takes away the weapons of the oppressor. After all, what can they do to the victim that could be worse? Oppression always has an element of power. A hunger striker takes that power away. However, it should be noted that anyone going on a hunger strike must be willing to die on it. Idle threats will only backfire.

I'll comment more on hunger strikes in the future.

Sunday, June 11, 2017

Modest Progress in Massachusetts

Massachusetts was the leader in alimony reform when it passed comprehensive Alimony Reform Action of 2011 however there has been a series of attempt to misinterpret legislative intent and subvert the law since then.  A new bill is now going through the legislative process to fix the this.

On recent bright spot is a recent Massachusetts Supreme Court ruling that durational limits to certain alimony agreements that predate The Act is not unconstitutional. A sorely needed ray of hope on what is in Minnesota a gloomy day both on the weather front as well as the reform front.

Sunday, June 4, 2017

Why We Lie

The current issue of national Geographic's cover story is Why We Lie, which given how many people have lied to me during Spring's divorce suit against me is quite interesting.

I suspect that in many, if not most divorces, lying is rampant. Normally the person lying is one of the litigants (petitioner or defendant) and is often done at the encouragement of their lawyer. I am pretty sure Nelly Wince encouraged Spring to commit perjury and certainly Jon Wurst  encouraged me to, although  I declined to do so.

What is a bit usual with my situation is that Nelly Wince unquestionably lied in court. Normally lawyers are a bit more careful than that. Furthermore, the county attorney's office directly lied to me as well, telling me there is no law in the state against lawyers lying in court and stating that the term "Fraud Upon the Court" is not found in Minnesota statues.  Unbelievably sloppy. But probably both Nelly Wince and the county attorney's office knew that in the end it did not really matter as no one was going to take action against them.

Other entities such as Judge Mearly and the Lawyers Office of Professional Responsibility rather than lying just ignored reality and failed to do their job. They were more careful.

The National Geographic article has a nice graphic on why people lie:

Certainly Spring lied for economic advantage and power over me. And probably for malicious reasons as well. Nor would I discount pathological reasons given her history of lying often for no discernible reason.

Nelly Wince lied for economic and personal advantage. She believes that "winning" in court even if through criminal means will be good for her career. Sadly she is probably correct.