Saturday, July 14, 2012

Bob Hurt's Judicial Reform Agenda

We get judicial reform through amendment to the Constitution as follows. 

  1. Credentials.  Establish a Qualifications Function in the State's Department of State that verifies the credentials of all candidates for nomination or appointment and all public employees, and that automatically terminates, with notice, their compensation and right to seek office or perform the duties of employment for failure to meet qualifications.  Require full evaluation of financial reports and other qualifications, and renewed swearing of oaths annually as a condition of holding that employment.  Allow any Citizen to challenge the public employee for credentials, and  require the public employee to show them upon demand.
  2. Oaths. Force all judges to swear loyalty oaths as the laws AND Constitutions require, and require them to purchase oath compliance bonds.  See 4 USC 101, 102 and US Constitution, and compare to Florida Constitution Article II Sec 5.  Also see Florida Statute 105.031 and 876.05-10, then look at whether judicial appointment nominees ever comply.
  3. Oath Violations. Establish laws punishing violation of oaths by all public officers and peace officers., allowing citizens to complain against them and their "bonds" for compensation.  Require Grand Juries and the Legislature to investigate all charges of judicial malfeasance.
  4. The Bar. Excise the Bar and its members from Government altogether and hand regulation of the Practice of Law to the Executive Branch.  Lawyers in the Executive or Legislative Branches (except State Attorneys and A.G.) violate Florida Constitution Article II Section 3.  Statewide Attorney should start prosecuting all who violate it to have them removed.
  5. Attorney Accountability. Require prosecution of all lawyers who cheat clients, make retainers (gifts) illegal, eliminate prosecution of non-lawyers for engaging in the activities in which lawyers engage (caveat emptor), make sanctions and suspension of good standing mandatory for violation of bar rules.
  6. Judicial Abuse. Eliminate judicial immunity and the power of judges to label people vexatious litigants or prohibit them from filing pleadings, and require judges to rule in writing on all written motions, notices, petitions, stating fact and law in support of the ruling. Impose mandatory periodic substance abuse testing of all judges, forbidding all addictions to mind-altering substances.
  7. Free Courts. Eliminate court costs and transcript costs and make the court publish all documents on the internet for easy access by the public, allow people to record all proceedings and purchase recordings, and prohibit unpublished opinions and sealed cases.
  8. Legislative Review. Limit Res Judicata to one year max and require the Legislature to clarify all laws to fall in accord with the court ruling (citing it) or to overturn the court ruling.  Require the Legislature to clarify the meaning and intent of the law for all non-unanimous panel court rulings.  Require the Legislature to correct the Constitution for all Supreme Court rulings regarding the nature of the Constitution.
  9. Disability Accommodation. Require the Court to provide PTSD evaluation and accommodation, including counsel and an advocate at no cost for all litigants earning less than $150,000 a year.
  10. Suffrage.  Limit voting rights to intelligent, informed, responsible, productive adult US Citizens - no welfare recipients, indigents, felons, people under 25, people with IQ less than 90, or people adjudged irresponsible (insane), people who have not graduated from High School or obtained a GED, or people with dementia should have the right to vote.  Allow only qualified electors to accede to public office.
  11. Education.  Require law training in all public schools from the 9th through the 12th grades.  High schools students should get the first two years of law school automatically. 
  12. Court Watch. Require all courts, council meetings (city, county) to provide rating forms to all attendees and would-be attendees to express their opinions about the proceeding and its officers - whether, in what way, and to what extent competent, fair, just, lawful, complete, abusive.    Also provide such forms to all lawyers and require them to encourage all clients and adversaries to provide written evaluations of their performance and behavior, and the satisfaction of others with their work.  Have all of these reports tabulated, summarized, and posted publicly on the internet for public review, particularly at election times.  Require a certain minimum public/professional satisfaction rating for attorneys to run for judgeships.
  13. Information Branch.  Establish an Advise and Inform Branch of Government, and populate its officers from highly achieved retirees from academia, military, government, science, and industry, appointed for life by plurality of state legislators.  It has the job of maintaining government archives, organizing and publishing on the internet and in print all government information including court documents, informing the news media and public of government affairs, investigating candidates for office and their credentials for validity and approving only valid candidates, publishing advisories on candidates and the plans/agendas for the other branches, and advising public officers in other branches as to wise courses of action, informing the public about efforts of people and groups in other branches to do illegal or unconstitutional acts, and advising advises officers in other branches on the constitutionality/legality of legislation or judicial acts.  This branch also collects information about American civilization, plans its direction and evolution milestones, and tracks and corrects progress. This branch also initiates lawsuits in its own corrective council against individuals and branches or departments of government for violation of the Constitutional restrictions on their powers, or for abrogating their responsibilities, or for corruption. No one may appeal its decisions which it sends to the judicial court of normal jurisdiction as an indictment.  It may convene a special court in the case of indictments against elected or appointed officers, for which it selects a panel of retired attorneys and industry leaders as judges.  This branch may sue on behalf of the people or an individual in cases of government malfeasance or corruption.  And it may hire attorneys to conduct the prosecution..

We cannot have good government so long as we don't restrict voting rights to intelligent, informed, productive, responsible, law-abiding Citizens, and verify the credentials of candidates for appointment and election, and existing employees.  It should seem axiomatic that the stupid, the ignorant, the indigent, the criminal, and the irresponsible can never produce good government, so they should have zero say in it.  If allowed to vote, they will produce the mess we see in American politics and government today.

The Courts have become dens of virtual insanity that deny justice about as much as they administer it, owing to the "good old boys network" granting itself immunity and making it virtually impossible to weed out bad judges early, and owing to the profligate lawlessness of attorneys who cheat their clients with impunity.  The people have to dismantle the elements of the judicial oligarchy that gives it a stranglehold on the land.  Those elements include judicial immunity, presence of the Bar's members in government, Supreme Court and Bar control over lawyers, the prohibition of non-lawyers performing legal services, and the impossibility of eliminating bad judges, and the presence of bar members throughout government, destroying the separation and balance of powers. 

Many people do not know that the Florida Constitution prohibits members of one branch from performing duties in another branch, and that the bar and its members all belong to the judiciary.  Thus, a lawyer who gets elected to the Legislature might seem to make sense until one realizes that the Supreme Court exercises authority over that lawyer through the bar and its power to regulate admission to the "practice of law" and discipline of those admitted.

Further, most people do not understand the danger of limiting the practice of law to licensed attorneys only.  Some reasons include these facts: attorneys never guarantee performance; the bar will not discipline attorneys for misbehavior except in the most egregious instances; in adversarial proceedings one side nearly always loses, so half the litigants cannot win in spite of having a lawyer represent them; bar complicity in prosecuting citizens for unauthorized practice of law has created an expensive, unaffordable-for-most, legal services monopoly for lawyers; the bar refuses to require lawyers to publish their win/loss record so the public can evaluate the lawyer's effectiveness, so every hiring of a lawyer constitutes a dice-roll in a dark closet; the general trend of lawyers to hijack a case and ignore the client's needs and demands in the prosecution of the case often results in permanent damage to the interests of the client.

And most don't understand the treachery of the bar as a quasi-private semi-secret society.  Bar members pay dues which the bar wastes on political activism to increase its control over the courts and government.

An essential element of restoring sanity to the judiciary lies in requiring judges and candidates to prove their credentials and qualifications and in requiring them to comply with their oaths and refrain from tortious conduct.

And a fourth, "Information" Branch of Government should coordinate and publish all information about government, those who seek office, their qualifications and strengths/weaknesses, the advisability of intended government actions.  And this branch should plan the direction and major milestones of American civilization.

As it stands, State and National civilization  muddles along without conscious planning by any group but international bankers and the existing administration, without clear-cut values, direction, or policy.  And it changes from administration to administration without rhyme or reason.  The only means of correcting this lies in making it the permanent ambition of a fourth branch to give overall direction to the other branches to keep them on some kind of civilizational track.  Theoretically, widespread knowledge of the people about the misbehavior of government operatives or inadvisable behaviors will operate to create political dissent that will affect recall, elections, and ejection from office.

Our American system of government clearly has flaws.  No means exist to enforce constitutional limits on government.  A fourth branch that can indict and prosecute other branches or departments or individuals in government will go a long way toward reducing lawlessness in and improving quality of government, particularly the judiciary.

Bob Hurt
2460 Persian Drive #70
Clearwater, FL 33763-1925
(727) 669-5511
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