Sunday, February 17, 2013

Truth is a defense

I have harshly criticized many people on this blog. Besides my ex-wife, I attacked CPS social worker Sally Mitchell, commissioner Irwin H. Joseph, judges William Kelsay, Heather D. Morse, Patricia Bamattre-Manoukian, and court psychologists Kenneth Barry Perlmutter PSY 7053, Faren Ray Akins PSY 7110, and Bret Kale Johnson PSY 10630. I have described them as greedy, incompetent, corrupt, evil, and generally unworthy of their official jobs.

So why haven't any of them sued me for libel?

Several reasons. First, truth is a complete defense to a claim of defamation. What I said was true, and I would prove it in court. Furthermore, I would surely prove that they were much worse than I said, because they surely misbehaved in many other cases that I do not even know about.

Second, I am entitled to my opinions.

Third, the California anti-SLAPP law would very likely require them to pay attorney fees for trying to interfere with my free speech rights.

Fourth, California has a one-year statute of limitation on defamation actions. Their silence for one year effectively admits that everything I said was true.

When Hollywood makes a movie about a real-life story, it waits at least a year after a published book in order to eliminate possible claims. Even the Osama bin Laden movie, Zero Dark Thirty, was released 13 months after the first book on the killing, even tho there were hardly any concerns about libel.

I do believe that when the taxpayers pay for irresponsible conduct by public officials, that conduct should be exposed.

Unfortunately, fellow angry dad Dan Brewington is serving a 5-year prison term for saying similar things. He posted on his blog:
that “Public awareness is the only way to fight this kind of corruption”

“In case there is any doubt about the unethical/illegal behavior of Judge Humphrey and Dr. Edward J. Connor ...”
His blog demonstrated the unethical/illegal behavior, and that was not disputed at his trial. He was convicted because Indiana law makes it a crime to threaten to subject public officials to ridicule.

He was also convicted of perjury for failing to make the inference that state ethics adviser Heidi Humphrey was the wife of Judge James D. Humphrey, even tho a web search revealed that they had the same home address. And he was convicted of obstruction of justice for making repeated discovery request for Connor's notes and evidence support his one-sided opinion, even tho the court ultimately said that it was not necessary for him to know why he lost custody of his kid.

I don't see how failing to make an inference could ever be perjury, or how making a discovery request could ever be obstruction of justice. The Indiana judges and prosecutors were crooks to send him to prison for this.

He was convicted of threatening Heidi Humphrey and Edward J. Connor, but those counts were reversed on appeal.

The court authorities could not sue Brewington for telling the truth, and they could not get him to shut up by taking his kid away. So they put him in prison on bogus charges.

Update: The UK Guardian reports:
Google may have to act quicker to remove potentially libellous posts from its Blogger platform following a court of appeal ruling in London.

The court ruled that a gap of five weeks between a complaint being made and the removal of allegedly defamatory comments on a blogpost could leave it open to a libel action, overturning a finding in the high court last year.
This could be a concern because Google Blogger hosts this blog, and truth is not always a complete defense in England.

1 comment:

paulmurray said...

This is not the case in all jurisdictions. In many places, just because something is true, does not mean that it is not defamatory to publish the fact.
But the essence of free speech is that it must be permissible to comment on the actions of public officials discharging their roles. Why? Because the foundation of democracy is the consent of the governed, and consent is meaningless unless it is informed consent.
The right of free speech is a foundation of democracy, and a "democracy" that does not vigorously defend it is not one.