Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ Category

‘Samurai’ Turns Out to be Blind Man with White Cane; Police Tase Him Anyway

October 17, 2012

Via Gawker: ‘Samurai’ Turns Out to be Blind Man with White Cane; Police Tase Him Anyway. (h/t Ed. at Blawg Review):

It was like being “trapped in a nightmare,” says 61-year-old Colin Farmer, a blind stroke victim from Chorley in Lancashire, of his recent run-in with police that ended with him being tased and cuffed for no apparent reason.

After “a number of reports” were received of a man armed with a samurai sword strolling through Chorley, police were dispatched to the scene only to encounter Farmer, who was walking “at a snail’s pace” with his white cane.

Giving him no time to explain, officers shot Farmer in the back with a 50,000-volt Taser, sending him crashing to the ground.

“I thought I was going to be attacked by hooligans,” Farmer recalled.

If only this poor guy had a lawyer. Wait, for Daredevil, justice is blind, and for the guilty…there’s hell to pay:

Or, as my blawg comrade-in-arms, George Wallace replied on Twitter:

UPDATED: Please Help Johnny Mavroutsikos Beat Cancer: A Personal Appeal

October 11, 2012

UPDATE: Thursday, October 11, 2012

It is with a heavy heart that I announce the passing of Johnny Mavroutsikos this evening. A fine, brave young man who fought the devastating renal cancer valiantly and with quiet grace, died peacefully, surrounded by his loving family and friends.

There is comfort when suffering is at an end.

Funeral arrangements will be announced by the Mavroutsikos family.

Steve, Bessie, Chrissy: On behalf of my family to yours; our hearts and thoughts are with you in this difficult time. Your son had the heart of a warrior.

Antonin Pribetic and family

This is a personal appeal to my readers, friends and colleagues.

Please consider making a donation  (in any amount you can afford) to help Johnny Mavroutsikos, a close friend of our extended family, who is bravely battling a rare form of Kidney Cancer (Renal Cell Carcinoma).

Via the Help Johnny Mavroutsikos’ Beat Cancer Facebook Page:


Johnny Mavroutsikos at the age of just 16 was diagnosed on February 6 ,2012 with a rare form of Kidney Cancer (Renal Cell Carcinoma). He needs your help.
Although Johnny has fought valiantly, the cancer has spread (metastasised to stage 4) and the doctors have informed the family that the medication provided will not work and there are no alternatives available to them through the hospital.Johnny and his family have not given up hope. There are new experimental treatments available that have shown great promise but sadly they are not covered under the families health insurance and are very costly.

Please help Johnny and his family by donating what you can, so that this young boy, that just turned 17, can fulfill his birthday wish to get well and be able to continue on his journey of life that he has only begun.

“Plant seeds of happiness, hope, success, and love; it will all come back to you in abundance. This is the law of nature.”

Help Johnny Beat Cancer Today!
Our deepest and sincerest thank you.

Go to the PayPal Direct Link.

Thank you.

The Trial Warrior Blog Turns Three

August 10, 2012

Today is the third anniversary of The Trial Warrior Blog.

I am thankful to my readers and fellow blawgers who have taken the time to stop by and visit and share their thoughts and ideas.

I don’t have much to report in the way of milestones, except getting sued along with the rest of the Internet and having a bogus Law Society complaint for my Twitter meanderings dismissed.

Lately, the blawging muse has been fickle and my output has been less than Greenfieldian in its prodigiousness.

Blawgin’ ain’t easy.

Time is the enemy: it saps inspiration, it blinds insight, and it betrays dedication.

Balancing professional and family commitments, while trying to find the time to write something of substantive value, remains a challenge. Without sounding forlorn or cynical, I am finding less and less to blog about. Most of what was relevant, interesting or contentious in the Canadian blawging community has been swallowed up by a proliferation of law firm blogs churning out quasi-electronic newsletters, with the obligatory commendations of legal tech gadgetry and the clarion call of social media marketing.

That any of my posts have garnered interest has — unsurprisingly and unremittingly — everything to do with my fellow blawgers and readers who have generously linked and shared them. For this alone, I am grateful beyond words.

A Polite Bench Slap from the Supreme Court of Canada

August 2, 2012

The Supreme Court of Canada in Canada v. Craig, 2012 SCC 43 reminds lower courts how the principle of “stare decisis‘ works:

[18] There is no doubt that Dickson J.’s interpretation of s. 13(1) in Moldowan, is a precedent binding on the Federal Court of Appeal and the Tax Court of Canada. While Gunn agreed with much of what Dickson J. wrote in Moldowan, on the crucial question of whether farming as a source of income could be subordinate to another source and still avoid the loss deduction limitation of s. 31(1), Gunn departed from Moldowan, a precedent binding on the Federal Court of Appeal.

[19] One of the fallouts from Gunn is that it left the Tax Court of Canada and the Federal Court of Appeal itself in the difficult position of facing two inconsistent precedents and having to decide which one to follow. The uncertainty which the application of precedent is intended to preclude is seen in the decisions since Gunn, in which the Tax Court has acknowledged Moldowan as the leading case while also feeling bound to follow Gunn: Stackhouse v. R., 2007 TCC 146, [2007] 3 C.T.C. 2402, Falkener v. R., 2007 TCC 514, [2008] 2 C.T.C. 2231, Loyens v. R., 2008 TCC 486, [2009] 1 C.T.C. 2547, Johnson v. The Queen, 2009 TCC 383, 2009 D.T.C. 1245, Scharfe v. The Queen, 2010 TCC 39, 2010 D.T.C. 1078, and Turbide v. The Queen, 2011 TCC 371, 2011 D.T.C. 1347. And of course the Federal Court of Appeal followed Gunn in the instant case.

[20] It may be that Gunn departed from Moldowan because of the extensive criticism of Moldowan. Indeed, Dickson J. himself acknowledged that the section was “an awkwardly worded and intractable section and the source of much debate”. Further, that provision had not come before the Supreme Court for review in the three decades since Moldowan was decided.

[21] But regardless of the explanation, what the court in this case ought to have done was to have written reasons as to why Moldowan was problematic, in the way that the reasons in Gunn did, rather than purporting to overrule it.

[22] The Federal Court of Appeal, on the basis of its prior decision in Miller v. Canada (Attorney General), 2002 FCA 370, 220 D.L.R. (4th) 149, in which that court reaffirmed the rule that it would normally be bound by its own previous decisions, followed Gunn, and not Moldowan. The application of Miller and the question of whether the Federal Court of Appeal should have followed Gunn simply did not arise, in view of the Moldowan Supreme Court precedent.

 [23] The Federal Court of Appeal’s purported overruling of Moldowan does not, however, affect the merits of this appeal or the core question of whether Moldowan should in fact be overruled. [emphasis added]

Justice Scalia’s Inferno

January 19, 2012
Dante finds himself lost in a gloomy wood
Canto 1 of the Divine Comedy:Inferno illustrated by Paul Gustave Doré (1832-1883). The caption reads ‘In the midway of this our mortal life, I found me in a gloomy wood, astray’ Canto 1 lines 1,2.

 “Lasciate ogne speranza, voi ch’intrate” (“Abandon all hope, ye who enter here”) Dante Alighieri’s The Divine Comedy: Inferno, Canto III, The Gate of Hell

I share only two things in common with Justice Antonin “Nino” Scalia: a first name and a nickname. Everything else about Justice Scalia is anathema to my understanding of the legal system, professional ethics or the human condition.

Anyone who has read Justice Scalia’s dissent (with whom Justice Clarence Thomas predictably concurs) in the recently released U.S. Supreme Court decision in Maples v. Thomas, Commissioner, Alabama Department of Corrections  565 U. S. ____ (2012), will hopefully share my utter sense of bewilderment and melancholy. Unless, of course, you are inclined to believe that no sense of procedural justice exists and that rules of procedure—criminal, civil or administrative—are mere window-dressing like your grandmother’s saggy drapes. (more…)

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